Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Calendar Girls Bare All for Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma

In the 1998, Angela Baker's husband battled non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The British woman and her friends spent enough time in the hospital that they began dreaming up ways to fund blood cancer research. The result of their brainstorming was a modestly naughty calendar featuring women posed nude while performing daily, domestic activities.

The calendar took off and the women quickly became known as the Calendar Girls. "By December of 1999, just nine months after its launch, the calendar had sold 88,000 copies, and raised some $550,000 for leukemia research. That number has grown significantly since then, especially after Workman Publishing released an American version of the calendar" ( The story of these unsuspecting models caught on, and in 2003, a highly acclaimed film adaptation was released. In 2008, a theatrical version also debuted in the form of a stage play.

Angela lost her husband to NHL just five months after his diagnosis, but she has gone on to be a tremendously passionate spokesperson and activist for NHL funding. According to the official Calendar Girls website,

Angela sums up the extraordinary story of the Calendar Girls: “I think that we’ve all coped really well with what has happened. We’ve done the most amazing things but we’ve kept our feet on the ground and we’ve never forgotten why we did what we did. We didn’t do the calendar because we wanted to be famous but because we wanted to raise money in John’s memory. It has been the most marvellous experience.”


  1. This is so uplifting and inspiring! What a brave group of sassy ladies. I love it.

  2. I can't believe something like this took off. Goes to show you great things begin with small ideas.