Everyone knows the pink ribbon is a symbol of breast cancer awareness. But knowing about the disease is only half of the equation. One of the biggest ways people can help those affected is to raise money dedicated to research. Walking is probably the most popular method of fundraising, but there are other innovative ways that you can collect funds.
One woman in Maine was inspired to raise money in a special way after losing her friend to breast cancer. Donna Harris decided to use her talents to harness her competitive spirit and do a fundraiser by setting a world record. As a third degree black belt, she set out to make a world record for the most pine boards broken under a minute by a woman. She’s set to complete the task in October during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Not all fundraising has to go the traditional route. Get creative! Gaming is a big thing these days and most males love it. A great way to get sons, dads and brothers involved in aiding a disease that mostly affects women is to let them get their game on! Why not host a game tournament? Having a massive amount of games to play has the potential to raise thousands of dollars, would be a gamers paradise, and allow gamers to give back and feel even better about what they’re doing. Not only will it allow gamers to compete in a great environment, but it can act as a forum for those affected by breast cancer to congregate and share their stories of survival, grief, and triumph.
Recently, novelty fundraisers have been catching the eyes of the news media. These fundraisers generate cash from sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo. The latter was used last year to help a single mother generate funds for her breast cancer diagnosis. Crystal Cody had a particularly harsh one. Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009, Cody had undergone several procedures, but was unable to keep her job because of it. Three young YouTube personalities, Jesse, Kong, and Jason, decided to give the money to someone personally affected by breast cancer–someone who really needed it. When starting an online fundraising campaign, there’s the chance to think about whom you want to personally help, even without them asking for donations. It’s a heartfelt and thoughtful way to help someone you care about.
Fundraising may seem like an almost impossible task, but careful planning can make things run smoothly. Make sure you’re clear about all the goals you want to reach. Use photos to capture attention. Put a team together and delegate responsibilities for key tasks. Don’t let others know about the event until everything is finalized. Remain gracious and send notes of appreciation to those who make donations if possible.
The Breast Cancer Research Foundation has representatives on hand to help you create and meet your breast cancer fundraising goals. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance and check out their site where you can view a live tracker of the number of research dollars raised year to date and the number of research hours made possible through fundraising efforts of volunteers worldwide. So far, over $28,800 has been raised and more than 580 research hours have been made possible!
When you don’t want to just walk or do a marathon, creatively thinking about your interests can help you create a unique opportunity to help a deserving cause. Get out there and get the juices flowing. There’s virtually no limit to what you can do.
Kiersten is senior at the University of Georgia, majoring in magazine journalism and pursuing a certification in new media. She has a business certificate and loves exploring the possibilities that the world of writing has to offer her.