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Relay For Life campus top performers raise over $3 million

Although the school year for most students was impacted by COVID-19, high school and college Relay For Life events throughout the nation did not stop raising critical funds for our mission. Our campus top performers have collectively raised $3,068,175! 

In this video, our CEO Gary Reedy,shares his appreciation to our top performing events especially during this difficult year. 

The top performing events (listed below) have a lot to be proud of including: 

  • College events: Raised $1,953,192. 
  • High school events: Raised $854,992. 
  • Growth events: Raised $137,431, growing $68,053 year over year (49.5% growth). 
  • Facebook Fundraising: Events with a high utilization of Facebook Fundraisers raised $122,560, with $57,934 of those dollars from Facebook Fundraising (47.3%). 
  • ACS Fundraising App: A high school event in Kansas had 569 registered participants, with 204 using the fundraising app (35.9%). This is high utilization of the app. 

Below are the top performing college and high school events – in no particular order – for the 2020 Relay For Life season. The full list of campus top performers can be found here.

Top 15 Revenue Grossing College Relays

  • University of Michigan (MI)
  • Northeastern University (MA)
  • Saint Anselm College (NH)
  • SUNY Geneseo (NY)
  • Saint Louis University (MO)
  • Washington University in Saint Louis (MO) 
  • Florida International University (FL)
  • Florida State University (FL)
  • University of Georgia (GA)
  • Elon University (NC)
  • San Juan Estudiantil (PR)
  • University of South Carolina (SC) 
  • James Madison University (VA)
  • Virginia Tech (VA)
  • University of Oklahoma (OK) 

Top 6 Revenue Grossing High School Relays

  • Father Ryan (TN)
  • District 88 Youth (IL)
  • Elizabeth (NJ)
  • Union County Vocational Tech Schools (NJ)
  • Blue Valley Youth (KS)
  • Mission San Jose High School (CA)

Top 3 Year-Over-Year Growth

  • University of Vermont (VT)
  • Boise State (ID)
  • University of Iowa (IA)

Facebook Fundraising 

  • Grand Valley State University (MI)
  • Longwood University (VA)

ACS Fundraising App Adoption

  • Jaguar Nation (KS)


  • RSVP for the national Making Strides kickoff on Aug. 11

    It will be streamed on Facebook, YouTube, and makingstrideswalk.org

    Our commitment to fighting breast cancer is stronger than ever, but how we rally communities and celebrate this fall will look very different.

    Although in 2020 we won't convene crowds of walkers, we will mobilize this movement in several new ways that will still engage our communities and raise critical revenue to sustain research and programming. This will include our kickoff rally.

    You are invited to join past and current participants, team leaders, sponsors, and supporters for the first-ever nationwide Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Kickoff on Tuesday, August 11, at 12 p.m. ET! Northeast Region volunteers are welcome to join the national kickoff in addition to their regional kickoff on August 13.

    Our lineup of guests includes:

    • Host and emcee: Marquetta Bryan, Georgia Area Board Chair
    • Carmen Guerra, MD, MSCE, ACS, Inc. Board Scientific Officer, will speak to breast cancer disparities and the American Cancer Society's health equity work.  
    • Personal stories from breast cancer survivors Latashia Agelink and Shannon Vick.
    • Interview with ACS-funded breast cancer researcher Darren Roblyer, PhD.
    • Kris Kim, chief operating officer, will share an ACS leadership message.

    We know there's a whole lot going on in the world right now, but this fight matters more than ever. The nationwide kickoff rally will inspire and re-ignite your passion to defeat breast cancer.

    How to join

    We envision a future where our daughters – our children – will no longer live with the threat of breast cancer. Unfortunately, their future is at risk. We can't and won't allow progress to be put on hold because of COVID-19. At risk are more and better treatments and discoveries that will improve and save lives.


  • #ShareTheLight live event raised nearly $200,000

    ​Help us keep up the momentum on social media

    Our star-studded #ShareTheLight live event raised just under $200,000 across web, social, mobile, and email! If you missed it, you can watch a replay here.

    The July 16 live event was just the launch of our #ShareTheLight social media campaign, and we need your help to keep up the momentum on social media. We’re asking every staff member to help. Here's how: 

    • Share a photo or video with your light – a match, candle, luminaria – to honor a survivor and then post it to your social circle. Challenge your friends and family members to share the light and make a donation. Be sure to tag the American Cancer Society (@AmericanCancerSociety) and use the hashtag #ShareTheLight. Any social site is fine, but we raise the most money on Facebook.
    • Sample video script: I’m lighting this match in honor of my best friend’s dad Scott Dietrich who lost his battle to cancer and for Lori Zenker who currently got word she is officially cancer free, but is still actively recovering. It’s so important to put faces and names to this horrible disease. That is why I’m sharing the light and donating $50 to the American Cancer Society in Scott and Lori’s honor. I challenge Natalie Ault, Jordy Anderson, and Lukas Metz to Share the Light in the fight against cancer and match my donation!
    • Sample social post: Cancer affects us ALL. I nominate @NatalieAult, @JordyAnderson, and @LukasMetz to donate to @AmericanCancerSociety and post how you are going to #ShareTheLight in honor of those who have fought, are fighting, and will fight cancer in their lifetime.

    Thank you!




  • This year's Pan Ohio Hope Ride offers top fundraisers a safe relay option

    ​The 328-mile route from Cleveland to Cincinnati has been divided into 36 segments, with each rider completing an 8- to 12-mile portion alone

    Our Pan Ohio Hope Ride is virtual this year, with participants creating their own 328 miles on local trails and roadways throughout the month of July as they raise funds and awareness for our mission.

    The 14th annual event will culminate with a volunteer-led, socially distant Relay of Hope ride taking place on the original dates of the four-day cycling tour, July 23-26. The usual 328-mile route from Cleveland to Cincinnati has been divided into 36 segments, with each Relay of Hope cyclist to complete an 8- to 12-mile portion of the route, one at a time, until the last rider finishes in Cincinnati.

    It is a long-standing Pan Ohio Hope Ride tradition for cyclists to pin or write the names of those they are riding for on their jerseys to remind themselves of their “why” as they take on the at-times arduous 328-mile journey. This year, all participants, virtual and relayers, were invited to submit names of those they ride for to be included in capsules that will accompany each rider.

    “The Relay of Hope is a way for us to keep the spirit of the Pan Ohio Hope Ride alive in a safe way during this time when so much is virtual. These cyclists, which include our top fundraisers, some of our Champions of Hope who have survived cancer, will be carrying more than 1,000 names with them," said Stacy McGrath, Pan Ohio Hope Ride, 2020 chair.

    Volunteers from the executive leadership committee will be accompanying the entire relay to provide support. Follow Pan Ohio Hope Ride on Facebook and Twitter to meet each of the Hope Relayers as they complete their leg of the journey. 

    The relay begins at 7 a.m. July 23 at John Carroll University in Cleveland, with Rick Barnhart riding in honor of his teammate, Jim Bond Sr., a longtime Pan Ohio Hope Ride champion, top event fundraiser, and cancer survivor. Thursday will see nine legs from Cleveland to Wooster for a total of 11 cyclists riding 85.4 miles.

    To date, the 2020 Pan Ohio Hope Ride has raised more than $470,000, bringing the 14-year total to $9.7 million. They are hoping to hit $600,000 this year.

    Participants who raise at least $5,000 by July 25 will get to join a Zoom thank you call with our CEO Gary Reedy at 5 p.m. that day.




  • Traditional, large scale Making Strides walks will not be held in 2020

    Website banner and announcement live on all local event web pages

    Our commitment to fighting breast cancer is stronger than ever, but how we rally communities and celebrate this fall will look very different. To protect the health and safety of our participants and staff, the American Cancer Society will not hold traditional, large scale Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walks in 2020.

    On Friday, July 10, an updated website banner and COVID-19 event announcement went live on all local event web pages.

    Fortunately, Making Strides has always been more than just a walk – it's a movement. This is an important distinction for all of us to embrace. Although in 2020 we won't convene crowds of walkers, we will mobilize this movement in several new ways that will still engage our communities and raise critical revenue to sustain research and programming.

    This year we are making it easier for anyone, anywhere to make an impact in the fight against breast cancer. Learn more by tuning into the nationwide virtual kickoff at 12 p.m. ET on Tuesday, August 11. Register for it now.

    How you can get involved 

    • Sign up for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer: Leading up to October, raise funds digitally and easily. Join the movement at MakingStridesWalk.org, and use the new digital fundraising guide to help you raise dollars right from your home. 
    • Sponsor the MSABC movement in your community: Help us ensure we can safely celebrate and honor survivors and thrivers during breast cancer awareness month.
    • Join Real Men Wear Pink: Engage with your personal and professional networks to sign up, become a sponsor, or recruit for a local RMWP campaign in support of the Making Strides movement this fall.


  • Volunteer Community now live on cancer.org

    The new Volunteer Community is now live on cancer.org. This is an online platform for all current and potential volunteers to easily search, view, select, and then sign up for volunteer opportunities with ACS. This platform is part of our larger organizational strategy to manage relationships using Salesforce. 

    The Volunteer Community is the front door for volunteers to complete training and compliance requirements and track their volunteer hours and recent volunteer history. Volunteers will access the Volunteer Learning Center through the Volunteer Community.

    The American Cancer Society's ability to provide available volunteer opportunities is dependent on staff posting available and needed opportunities. This is an opportunity for our organization to offer new and different volunteer opportunities – including in-person and virtual. Volunteers are encouraged to work closely with their staff partners to help pivot to virtual experiences, develop new roles to post on the volunteer community, and find ways to share this new platform with others in their community. 

    The Volunteer Community Video Guide offers an overview of the basic navigation of the site. If you have any additional questions, please contact the Volunteer Care Team at acsvolunteercare@cancer.org

  • Reminder: Post your #ShareTheLight video or image

    Starting July 16 and continuing through October, we’re uniting to Share The Light and raise funds to ensure COVID-19 doesn’t stop cancer patients from receiving the support they need.  

    Share The Light is a digital fundraising campaign that illuminates opportunities to reverse the downward trends in financial support of cancer research and patient services.  

    How You Can Help 

    Share a photo with a caption or shoot a video with your light – a match, a cell phone, a candle – and tell your friends and family why you're sharing this light in the fight against cancer. Then, post it to social media.

    • Example video: You can offer words of encouragement, share your cancer story, or share how you’re fighting cancer. You can find some examples on Facebook, including this one from a staffer in Vermont. Post it to social using #ShareTheLight and tag @AmericanCancerSociety. 
    • Sample social post: I’m helping illuminate the critical need to increase funding for the cancer fight. I challenge (tag your friends/family) to do the same. #ShareTheLight (tag American Cancer Society).
    • Share our Share the Light posts on your own social media channels. Find them on InstagramFacebookTikTok, and LinkedIn.

    Learn more at cancer.org/sharethelight.

  • ACS is now on TikTok and we're seeking content creators

    Submit your TikTok fundraising ideas

    We're excited to share that ACS is now on TikTok. In addition to fun content that seeks to entertain and educate, we're asking you to use your TikTok for good.

    Starting the week of July 20, a TikTok donation sticker for ACS will be available and 100 percent of donations received on the platform will go to ACS so we can continue attacking cancer from every angle. 

    Anyone can use the donate sticker! After creating a TikTok, head to stickers > support nonprofit and select American Cancer Society. And don't forget to follow @AmericanCancerSociety

    We're looking for ACS content creators, both volunteers and staff, for TikTok. Got the moves or big ideas? Send an email to acstiktok@cancer.org to discuss being featured on the channel.




  • Something bright is coming!

    ​Join us on Thursday, July 16, at 7 p.m. ET for an hour-long celebration kickoff to a fundraising season of light

    As we all know, financial support for the cancer fight has plummeted due to COVID-19. Share The Light will illuminate the need to reverse that trend now and inspire viewers to fundraise and advocate for the Society by shining a light on this urgent, lifesaving need. 

    Here’s what you can expect: 

    • A look into how the Society provides vital support and services to cancer patients
    • A celebrity-moderated interview with inspiring cancer survivors from across the country
    • A can’t-miss “illumination moment” and sharing of light
    • Performances and words of encouragement and support from celebrities 
    • Ideas on how you can carry your own light forward to help fund a brighter future for all who are touched by cancer

    Help us Share The Light; here’s what you can do right now:

    • Create a video or snap a photo sharing a light, then post it to social using #ShareTheLight and tag @AmericanCancerSociety. Here's an example.
    • Share our Share the Light posts on your own social media channels ( Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and LinkedIn.)

    Thank you for sharing your light as we create a brighter future for patients and caregivers who need our help. Head to cancer.org/sharethelight for more information. 

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