Published: Apr 07, 2013 1:14 PM EDT
Updated: Apr 07, 2013 1:16 PM EDT

FORT MYERS BEACH, Fl. - Sculpting sand to raise awareness.  That's what professionals from all over the world are doing this week on Fort Myers Beach.

It's the Susan G. Komen Sand Bash for the Cure.  

Grain by grain, detail by detail.  For Suzanne Altamare, this 30-year passion is helping her heal.

"It was a major release... just a major release!" Suzanne says.

For weeks, suzanne  has been planning this sculpture, a sandy reflection of her life several years ago.  She took care of her husband while he battled cancer.  He lost that fight, but Suzanne  says her sculptures often symbolize his spark.

"It was an archangel and it was really for my husband... the archangel just had scars everywhere but he was smiling and looking back and this one will have scars too," she adds.

Suzanne is one of ten sand sculptors participating in the Southwest Florida Susan G. Komen Sand Bash.  In all, six different countries are represented.  Organizers say this is the first event of it's kind bringing all female artists together to share their gift and send a message.

"What a great connection to put breast cancer research with all women sculpting... I have 4 beautiful little nieces that are all under the age of 10 and I want them to be 18 years old, 20 years old and not to ever have to worry about getting breast cancer so our goal is obviously to find a cure," says Suzanne Fletcher with the foundation.

The 10-day event is not only supporting this organization but also bringing survivors together.

"I got out there and I just continued to enjoy life, you can't let it stop you at least I couldn't," says Terri Cameron, a breast cancer survivor.