BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and there are many ways to get involved and support survivors and those battling the disease.

“It changes your life forever. You’re never going to be the same,” said breast cancer survivor Kim Huey.

Huey and Electria Coleman are both breast cancer survivors. They were each diagnosed with breast cancer last year and have since undergone treatment. Both women say their support circles greatly helped them in their fight against the disease.

“It’s been a journey, but my family and my church family has been just magnificent. I can’t even describe how supportive they’ve been,” says Coleman.

“It’s something that nobody should ever have to go through alone and I would just say make sure that that support just continues and I can say that I have and I’ve been blessed just to have that support continue on and I know I’ll have it for the rest of my life,” says Huey. “Then I want to turn around and do that for other people too.”

These survivors say getting an annual mammogram was key to the diagnosis and encourage everyone not to skip that testing.

“75% of people who are diagnosed with breast cancer do not have a family history,” said Coleman. “So usually, you’d think maybe because your mom or your grandmother or someone had it that you would have it, but that’s not true.”

The Breast Cancer Research Foundation of Alabama (BCRFA) said besides supporting people in their journey physically, people can also support the fight against breast cancer by helping further research into the disease.

“40 years ago, 3 in 5 people lost their battle with breast cancer and now those numbers are reversed. So, it’s a sign of hope and it’s great hope,” said Beth Davis, president of BCRFA.

BCRFA is hosting different research fundraisers throughout the month. Details can be found on their website