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Relay to remember, celebrate and raise awareness

Erika Faust | Interrobang | News | March 18th, 2013

Whether you've personally battled cancer or you've helped a friend or family member fight the disease, it's something that has affected us all.

Matthew Stewart's life was touched by cancer earlier this year.

“One of my (volleyball) team members unfortunately lost his mom to cancer this year. It didn't just affect him ... it affected our whole team.”

As the Fanshawe Student Union's Vice President of Athletics and Residence Life, Stewart has been hard at work organizing Fanshawe's second annual Relay For Life, an event that raises awareness and money for the Canadian Cancer Society.

“It's also to give back to the people who have suffered from it or who have been directly affected by it,” added Stewart.

Last year, more than 15,000 teams across Canada raised $51 million during Relay For Life. At Fanshawe alone, two teams raised $2,500.

From 7 p.m. on March 23 until 7 a.m. on March 24, Relay For Life will take over Forwell Hall. Participants will run on a track around the room, and each team must have at least one person on the track during each of the 12 hours of the event. The event will begin with a few laps completed by cancer survivors. The track will be lined with luminaries — paper bags on which people can write the name of someone they know who battled cancer.

It will be an evening of fun, with games, prizes and other activities throughout the night, and a breakfast in the morning. There will also be an awareness information booth set up.

One day after creating a Facebook event page in early March, over 450 people had been invited. Two teams had registered online and raised over $700.

The goal is to raise $2,700 this year - $200 more than last year's events raised. “We're well on our way to that already,” Stewart said confidently.

There is a $10 entry fee per person, and Stewart said he is hoping 10 to 15 people will sign up per team. There will be a table set up outside the Oasis cafeteria in SC building to sign up to participate, to give a donation, or to purchase a luminary for $5.

If you're not able to participate, you can still help! Stewart and his team will be collecting donations on campus in the days leading up to Relay For Life.

For more information or to sign up, head to the Fanshawe Student Union main office in SC2001, check out the Facebook event at or go to
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