Because of the generosity, creativity and hard work of a number of local businesses and volunteers, some cancer patients in northwest Georgia will have access to resources that might not otherwise have been available.
Cancer Navigators concluded its annual Cast Off Against Cancer fundraising campaign Sunday with a celebration at Heritage Park that coincided with National Cancer Survivors Day and announced that more than $65,000 had been raised to provide resources for the non-profit organization.
“When we kicked off this campaign in the spring, we set a goal of $50,000, and because of the tireless efforts of so many, we have far exceeded that goal,” said Scharla Battle, Community Outreach Manager for Cancer Navigators. “That funding will allow us to continue to provide assistance to so many cancer patients who often have nowhere else to turn.”
Cancer Navigators uses the money raised to provide resources such as transportation, nutritional products and wigs to patients who are not able to acquire them on their own.
Sixteen teams contributed to the cause in a creative way, taking a plain wooden oar and decorating it to fit the theme of Cast Off Against Cancer. Awards were given to the team that raised the most money, the team that showed the most team spirit and to the team that had the best decorated oar.
“Our oar contest has become very competitive over the years,” Battle said. “Not only do our teams pull out all the creative stops, they also work hard to out-hustle one another in garnering the most donations.”
A team sponsored by Heritage First Bank generated more than $8,500 in donations to take the award for most money raised. Floyd Medical Center’s Team Cure-I-bbean took the award for most team spirit, while Floyd’s PMO Paddlers won the award for best decorated oar.
Additionally, the winners of Cancer Navigators online guitar auction were announced. Christie D’Amour and Michelle Jackson each won a guitar autographed by Grammy-nominated and American Music Award-winning Sam Hunt, a Cedartown native. Kim Plant Dixon won a guitar autographed by Hunt, along with country artists Tracy Lawrence, Lee Brice, Cole Swindell, Doug Stone and Kane Brown.
The celebration also included the annual Daisy Drop, which allowed attendees to remember or honor someone who has bravely battled cancer, or is currently being treated for cancer, by dropping a daisy into the Oostanaula River in that person’s name.
“The Daisy Drop has become a special tradition and is a highlight of this celebration,” Battle said. “There weren’t many dry eyes watching those beautiful flowers float down the river in honor of those we love.”
Cancer Navigators serves northwest Georgia as a complement to the medical expertise of cancer care providers by guiding those affected by cancer toward a better understanding of diagnosis and care and connecting them with needed resources. More information can be found at www.cancernavigatorsga.org.