How 3 + 11 + 3 + 60 = 40

by Samantha S Posted on February 23, 2011

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When my friend Meg called and asked us to join her in yet another Breast Cancer fund raising event, we didn’t think twice, we just said YES. Details like the walk date, the blisters, and the training schedule came in second compared to supporting our friend, who had courageously fought and WON her personal battle with breast cancer 3 times. Since our last walk and her 2nd duel with the cancer, more amazing women in our lives had been diagnosed. This was our chance to help them.

Eleven of us pledged our time, money and feet to a 3 days 60 mile walk in Seattle. Because so many of us lived in different cities, I used a Share site to keep us organized and motivated. We all uploaded photos from the Avon walk in LA 3 years earlier. We kept training notes, maps, weather updates, and product recommendations on our site. This way we had the chance to log in when we wanted, often putting up challenging notes (we are a competitive group) and foot photos to egg each other on. It was the perfect way to stay in touch and stay motivated during our long 7 month training.

As part of our effort we had some MAJOR fund raising to do. We made calling cards on Shutterfly for each team member – finding cute pink designs that represented each of our very individual personalities. The content was the same though: name, contact information, and a link to our donation site. We kept the cards with us at all times. A few of us also got pink hair extensions and when people asked “Why the pink hair?”, it was the perfect way to let them know how to donate. We made thank you notes and hand wrote to each of our donors to express our thanks and the reason this was so significant to each of us. Again we had many card choices. Some picked pink stripes, others pink flowers – but whatever the design we wanted donors to know they were making a difference.

We used the Share site to collect photos, so making a photo book about our experience was easy. I was so proud to be able to put all our work, time, and LOVE into a photo book for each walker so she could share the journey and remember how much the team’s efforts meant to Meg and the other survivors, loved ones, and people we met along the way.

$40,000 is a TON of money – we were a top 10 fund raising team for the Seattle event. I just had to share the good news! My final effort was to create a Shutterfly card that was a photo of all 11 of us at the finish line – letting our supporters know what an amazing feat we had accomplished and thanking them one last time for helping us change lives for women we know & those women we have yet to meet.

3 times beating cancer + 11 women + 3 days + 60 miles = $40,000 in donations

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  1. Joey Says:

    I love what you wrote above: 3 times beating cancer + 11 women + 3 days + 60 miles = $40,000 in donations. WOW – how inspiring!! A person can’t help but get inspired and shed a few tears reading your article. I love the idea of sending out a picture of all of you to all who supported you – great idea. Calling cards are super. As well as your share site. Inspiring and powerful. Thank you for sharing!

  2. AnnAbbott Says:

    Amazing and incredible. It is so inspiring that so much can get done when everyone points their positive energy in the same direction. Joey is right, what a wonderful idea to reach back out to those who supported you. BRAVO!

  3. lshell1973 Says:

    I did a Breast Cancer 3 day in October 2008 in Atlanta. I did it in memory of my sister who lost her battle with breast cancer in March of that year. It is honestly one of the most inspiring things I have ever done. The emotion involved in these walks is almost overwhelming but at the same time very humbleing. We all fuss and carry on sometimes when something is going on in our lives, but people who are fighting this battle against breast cancer (or any kind of cancer) inspire me. They inspire me because they could be raging against the unfairness yet they don’t. They continue to persevere and go on with their lives and their battle. Way to go on a job well done!!!

  4. BarbaraJ Says:

    This is such an inspiring article. You are a champ to me. I can’t imagine being in your shoes. Thank you to wonderful people that get out and meet the challenge. Great article.

  5. kniewohner Says:

    I too participated in the 3 Day in Minneapolis in 2007. What an event. It is one of the highlights of my life. I did not, however have a team as you did. How fortunate you all are to have each other and this experience. Not to mention the fund raising you did for this wonderful cause. Your ideas and photos are brilliant. Thanks for sharing and stirring up my memories. It is a concrete reminder that anything is possible if you are determined to give it 100%. :)

  6. TonetteB Says:

    WOW!!! This is so amazing! I am so touched by your story! Congratulations on raising $40,000 and for being a top ten fund raising team for the Seattle event! You must be so proud! I love the way you make a sharesite to document all the progress.Its so neat that you kept training notes, maps, weather updates, and product recommendations on your site The thank you cards and calling cards are beautiful! You and your friends made such a huge impact in the fight against breast cancer! You are all such an inspiration! This shows that determination and the clever idea of using Shutterfly can make a huge impact on others lives! I love this story so much! Bravo to all of you! May you all have good health, happiness, & many blessings! You are all my heros! :)

more about Samantha S

Bay Area Native. Live in Los Altos. Went to Cal Poly – studied Ag Business & Speech Communications. Volunteers for FOLPA, Special Olympics, Career Closet, Breast Cancer walks/fundraising. Worked for Google, EA, SFLY. Enjoys pop-culture, wine, cooking & dining, travel, and sports!

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