Ramapo’s American Cancer Society’s (ACS) annual Relay For Life raised nearly $11,000 to be donated to ACS to help support people who are affected by cancer. The event was held on Friday night to morning in the Bradley Center, filled with students and guests to participate in a variety of fun as well as emotional activities.
Relay For Life is an event that lasts anywhere from 12 to 24 hours, where participants walk throughout the night and are provided food, participate in games and other forms of entertainment. Those who attended the event in the Bradley Center were encouraged to stay from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. to symbolize that cancer doesn’t sleep.
This year’s Relay For Life theme was “Through the Decades,” and the Bradley Center was decorated to match with balloons and streamers emulating the ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s. The walls were lined with tables for clubs, games, fraternities and sororities.
There were also small businesses selling their products, a food truck and a game truck parked outside the venue. Agata Srodon, president of the ACS chapter on campus, said that 10% of the businesses’ proceeds throughout the night were being donated to the fundraising goal.
“Cancer affects everybody, no matter who they are.”
– Maecar Lagdamen
Noelle Johnstone, president of the Disney Club, said that she heard about ACS through involvement fairs. “I heard that this event was coming up and I thought that it was such an amazing cause… Disney Club definitely has to get involved.”
Aside from providing funding for cancer research, ACS does a lot for those who are affected by cancer. “They support them in many ways,” said Srodon.
She spoke about how ACS provides rides for those with cancer so they can get to and from their chemo treatments and helps insurance companies provide wigs or anything else patients might need to make their treatment more comfortable. “They make sure that everything is accessible for them,” said Srodon.
Brianna Curto, a Ramapo senior, said that she attended Relay For Life last year but was attending this year with her fraternity Phi Alpha Delta. “There are a lot of sororities and fraternities here that are well known on campus,” said Curto. “They can also help spread the word and bring more people to the event and help raise money.”
In addition to students, at least seven cancer survivors from the Ramapo College community attended and were given gifts of comfort.
At one point during the night, members of Ramapo’s ACS chapter began handing out glow sticks and turned off the lights, calling for everyone to sit on the track taped out on the floor. They asked everyone to break their glow sticks if they had someone in their life who had cancer, whether that be a family member or a friend. By the end, everybody in the room had cracked their glowsticks and the room was glowing.
“Everybody talks about cancer awareness, but there’s not much proactiveness with it,” said junior Maecar Lagdamen who has been involved with ACS for a year. “Cancer affects everybody, no matter who they are.”
The ACS organization on campus is a great way for students to get involved and support those who have been affected by cancer. “It’s something I feel like we all can band together and fight against,” Lagdamen said.
Featured photo courtesy of Mason Murphy