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SCV Prepares for Relay for Life with a Rally Tune-Up

The Relay for Life event, organized by the American Cancer Society Santa Clarita Valley Chapter, took place in Old Town Newhall near the Laemmle Theater. The event, themed “May the Cure be With You,” aimed to raise funds for cancer research while engaging participants with enjoyable games, face painting, and various activities.

One of the dedicated volunteers, Carol Calkins, creatively provided children with recycled T-shirts transformed into superhero capes for them to decorate. These capes symbolized the ongoing battle against cancer, allowing kids like ten-year-old Maurielle Chapman to express empowerment through words like “Fearless” and artistic representations like the purple ribbon, signifying solidarity with cancer survivors.

Maurielle, accompanied by her mother Wendy Manley, stumbled upon the event while heading to the local farmers market. The vibrant setup of purple tents and engaging conversations about the upcoming Relay for Life event caught their attention. This chance encounter provided Maurielle with insights into the prevalence of cancer and the importance of cancer prevention, leaving a meaningful impact on her and her mother.

The local chapter’s primary objectives for the event included raising awareness about cancer, educating the community on prevention strategies, and promoting their upcoming Relay for Life fundraiser scheduled for May 4 at Central Park. Volunteers like Kelly Petersen engaged children by painting their faces, adding to the festive atmosphere of the event.

For over two decades, the American Cancer Society’s local chapter has been hosting the annual Relay for Life celebration. This year, their goal is to raise \(300,000, with current donations totaling \)126,140.12. The event featured activities like luminary decorating, a poignant tribute to cancer survivors and those who have lost their lives to the disease.

Yvonne Salas, a dedicated volunteer for six years, led the luminary decoration efforts. This symbolic gesture serves as a touching remembrance of individuals within the SCV community who have been affected by cancer. The luminary ceremony, a solemn moment during the Relay for Life event, allows participants to honor and reflect on the lives touched by cancer.

Personal experiences with cancer motivate volunteers like Maria Falasca, a breast cancer survivor of 26 years. Despite her own battle with the disease, Maria’s journey was intertwined with the loss of her husband to prostate cancer. Her involvement with the American Cancer Society stems from the support she received during her challenging times and her desire to assist other survivors in their fight against cancer.

As the organization prepares for the main event, they anticipate around 2,000 attendees. Brad Peach, the mission lead, highlighted the opportunity for survivors and supporters to come together, engage in meaningful activities, and unite in the fight against cancer.