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Running For Relay For Life

220px-American_Cancer_Society_Relay_For_LifeIn May 1985, Dr. Gordon Klatt, a colorectal surgeon from Tacoma, Washington decided he wanted to raise money for the American Cancer Society in honor of his patients. Honor patients that have cancer or had cancer. For 24 hours, Dr. Klatt walked around the track. Throughout the night, friends paid $25 to run or walk 30 minutes with him. He walked approximately 83 miles and raised $27,000 to fight cancer. Nearly 300 of Dr. Klatt's friends, family, and patients watched as he ran and walked the course. After this successful event, Dr. Klatt thought about how other people could partake in a similar 24-hour event in communities across the country. He recruited a small team of people and put on the first Relay For Life event in 1986. Since then, Relay has developed into an overnight event where people bring tents and sleep out around the tracks.

People of all ages come out to bring the community together and reminisce about their loved ones who have died of cancer and honor those who have survived while raising money to fight for a cure.

Now, almost 4 million people take part in Relay events in over 5,000 communities in the United States. Relay For Life’s slogan is “Celebrate. Remember. Fight Back!” Encouraging everyone to hold events in the community to help others quit smoking, push citizens to have routine screenings, educate about cancer in minorities, and to volunteer their time to the American Cancer Society.

Let’s educate the community on how to establish a Relay event and about the various activities and events that are held during Relay. Staff may also give fundraising tips and help publicize the Relay event. Wondering where the funds go? The funding goes to detection and treatment programs, research grants and research programs ,prevention programs and community/patient support programs. People interested in becoming part of Relay must first see if there is a Relay event in their community. This can be done by contacting the local American Cancer Society office. If there is not a Relay event in the area, one may decide to recruit participants and work with the American Cancer Society staff to establish a Relay event. If a Relay event is already present in a community, an individual may go to Relay’s website and search for their Relay event by entering their zip code on Relay’s homepage. Each Relay event has its own webpage. You may sign up for your community’s Relay event online. There is often a small monetary fee associated with registration for a Relay event. If one would like to donate money, he or she can write a check to the American Cancer Society or visit the local community’s Relay webpage and follow directions to make an online donation.

Each year, Relay For Life posts the top-earned college and community online fundraising communities. So think to yourself about family members and friend that has battled with cancer. Lets as a whole give back by making that run in our community to show appreciation to the patients that has struggled with the illness.

By: Shanna Stroud
Last modified onThursday, 15 April 2010 17:03

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