This morning the American Cancer Society held it’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk at Montrose Harbor. It was a non-competitive 3 mile walk that unites communities to celebrate people who have battled breast cancer, educate people about ways to reduce their risk, and empower communities to join the fight. Every dollar raised and every step taken will save lives by helping people stay well and get well, by finding cures, and by fighting back against breast cancer. There is no registration fee or minimum fund raising requirement for walkers.
When I arrived at 6:45 AM it was still dark and raining steadily. After visiting the volunteer check-in booth and getting a t-shirt I walked over to my assigned post at the registration booth. A staffer named Heather greeted me and for security purposes checked my ID. Working the registration booth required us to accept and count donations in the form of cash, checks and credit cards.
Our booth registered walkers who had not signed up online. It seemed like the rain might deter people from showing up, but walkers started checking in shortly after 7 AM. We had walkers of all ages, and many came in groups with t-shirts that bore the name of their team or someone they were honoring or supporting. Some brought babies in strollers and other walked with their dogs. The weather was chilly and rainy until shortly after the walk started when the Sun finally came out.
We registered walkers until about 10 AM, but I stayed a little longer to help Heather clean up our tent. After going through the festival and checking out the sponsor booths I started walking towards my bus stop. On the way there I stopped along the course to cheer on the walkers, and ran into a former coworker whose wife was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. I congratulated her on being a survivor and chatted with them briefly before they continued walking.
When I first decided to embark on this challenge to help fifty organizations for my 50th birthday there were several causes and organizations I really wanted to help. This was one of the causes I had a personal inspiration to get involved with.
My mom was a breast cancer survivor for 14 years until a second bout finally took her from us on December 26th, 2000. She was a strong and caring woman, and I know she would have helped with this goal. I hope that my volunteering today strengthens other survivors, their families and friends, and gives them hope in their battle.
This year’s walk is over, but you can still donate by clicking the pink badge above or calling the American Cancer Society at 1-800-227-2345. This was number 48 and now only TWO MORE!