Relay for Life is an event in which people can honor patients who have cancer, survived it, or were taken by it and also donate money for the American Cancer Society or other cancer organizations. People from all around the world start teams at home to fundraise money for people affected by cancer. Relay for Life started thanks to surgeon Dr. Gordy Klatt who wanted more people to be aware of cancer and its effects on thousands of people. It started in 1985 and it is now the largest event that exists for this disease. Relay happens overnight and it is a chance for anyone to do acts of kindness for people who deserve love and support. To participate, teams can go through a series of steps. First, elect a team captain who will be in charge of completing all required tasks. Then, create fundraising events throughout a few months and sign up early for a Relay for Life event nearby.
There are over 5,000 events in over 20 countries that people can attend. At the beginning of a Relay for Life events, all participants are welcomed and thanked for attending. Next, survivors walk a lap and the caretakers walk the next one. This is to honor them and everything they have done while facing cancer head on or while taking care of people affected by this. Following that, there are tents that organizations put up where they continue to raise more money and people may enjoy any activities they offer. There may be live performances in some cities, food, and photo opportunities too. Afterwards, team members will light Luminaria, which symbolize people who were taken by cancer.
People who volunteer at a Relay for Life event can expect to have some responsibilities, depending on the position they have. Team members aid the captain in recruiting new members, planning fundraising opportunities, and gathering materials needed for the day of the event. Each team has to put up a tent which they decorate and they plan activities and bring food to sell. Promoting Relay for Life is another important task to do in preparation for the big day.
Remember to check your local Relay for Life teams and get involved in the fight against cancer!