Cullman Senior Magazine Summer 2019 - Page 10

Q & A with Cullman County Liaison Amanda Hanners Q. When and where is Relay for Life? Would you please share the nuts and bolts of this event? Q. Can you explain to me the theme behind the Cullman County Relay this year? A. Cullman County Relay is Friday May 3rd, 2019 beginning at 6 p.m. at Cullman County Fairgrounds at 1510 Sportsman Lake Road NW Cullman. Our goal is $150,000 made up of sponsorships from community businesses, team fundraisers and events, and money generated on Relay night from the community coming out, buying food, t-shirts, playing games and overall supporting our event. A. Our overall theme this year is Alabama’s Bicentennial “Bring Home a Cure,” and our teams will have themes related to any and all things Alabama. It may be a sports team, famous actor, musician, band, movie or author from Alabama. Relay For Life is a volunteer led event and Cullman has a fantastic group of volunteers who have been involved in Relay for many, many years. Helen Allen is our event lead and we have a large group of committee members who are dedicated and hardworking to make Relay a fantastic event each year. My role is to lend support and guidance to the volunteer committee, at ACS we say Relay is a volunteer led, staff supported event. A. Sure. Relay for Life was founded by Gordy Klatt in Tacoma, Washington, in 1985, the Relay for Life movement of 3.5 million participants across the world unite more than 4,500 events to celebrate people who have been touched by cancer, remember loved ones lost, and take action for lifesaving changes. Symbolizing the battle waged around the clock by those facing cancer, the event can last up to 24 hours and empowers communities to take a stand against cancer. Since 1985, Relay for Life events in the U.S. have raised more than $6.3 billion. Q. What is your role with Relay For Life? How long have you been involved in the American Cancer Society? I am the Community Development Manager for The American Cancer Society, I oversee Relays in four Counties—Cullman, Marshall, Jackson and DeKalb. I have been with ACS a little over a year, so this my second Relay season. Before coming to work for ACS I worked for Life South Community Blood Center for 11 years, and we usually had blood drives at Relay events. I have been coming to Relay for at least the past 12 years. 10 | SUMMER 2019 Q. Will you share a little of Relay For Life’s history with us? Q. What do the funds raised do for the people of Cullman County? A. The mission of the American Cancer Society is first and foremost to fund research. ACS contributions have led to over 70 percent of cancer breakthroughs and a 27 percent decline in mortality rates. Standard care options such as Gleevac, Tamoxiflen and other major chemotherapies are a direct result of ACS funded research. The treatment you may be receiving at the local cancer treatment center may have been developed because of our research. Q. What would you like the readers to know more about the American Cancer Society that most might not realize? A. I would like them to know the following: • The American Cancer Society also has patient support services 24/7 • Right here in Alabama American Cancer Society is funding 3 grants in the amount of $6.5 million. Nationally, American Cancer Society is funding 746 grants in the amount of $410 million; The great news about that is that a cancer breakthrough in ANY state benefits cancer patients here locally! National Cancer Information Center (1-800-227-2345) –the ACS cancer help is available 24/7/365 and is staffed with cancer information specialists ranging from the oncological nurses to insurance specialists. • Hope Lodge & Hotel Partners Program—both lodging options patients from more rural areas that must travel into larger cities for treatment. • Road to Recovery—rides are available to/from cancer treatment, especially for those who have a tougher time getting to treatment • Clinical Trial Matching Service • Cancer Support Network • Referrals to third-party resources Q. Any last thoughts? A. The city and county of Cullman have been fantastic supporters of Relay for Life for the past 25 years. We appreciate the community and thank you for helping us fight cancer from every angle! CULLMAN COUNTY SENIOR MAGAZINE