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Important Dates

Volunteers needed to help American Cancer Society light up neighborhoods

Sept. 14. COVID-19 has grounded the American Cancer Society’s events and community organizing, slicing annual fundraising efforts in half.

Instead of large events and to ensure safety, the American Cancer Society is seeking volunteers to sell luminaria in every community across the state. North Carolinians will join together on September 20 and light these decorative keepsake bags in homes and neighborhoods to remember and to honor those who have faced cancer.

“Relay For Life is all about togetherness,” said longtime American Cancer Society volunteer Doris Dedmon. “However, the safety of our patients, survivors, volunteers, and staff remains the highest priority.” 

Dedmon, an advocate for the “Neighbors Unite Against Cancer” campaign and has been involved in the  Relay For Life movement for 25 years and has served in many volunteer leadership roles over the years.  

“Luminaria ceremonies are traditionally held during annual Relay For Life events,” Dedmon says. “The ‘Neighbors Unite Against Cancer’ campaign allows participants to recapture the sense of community support while maintaining safety. …

“The American cancer Society is very important to me because their lifesaving research has helped so many of my  friends and family live longer than they should’ve. Cancer hasn’t stopped because of the pandemic, and neither will we!”

Without funds for research, lives will be lost.

 “We are in danger of losing a generation of progress in scientific research and a generation of lifesaving cancer treatments if we don’t act now. The end of cancer begins with research, which is why it has always been vital to achieving our mission,” said American Cancer Society Executive Director of Western North Carolina and South Carolina, Megan Nelson. “Research takes years to come to fruition. A cancer breakthrough begins perhaps 10-20 years earlier. If research is disrupted today, it means lives lost tomorrow.”

The responsibilities of a Neighborhood Host include:

  • Pass out promotional and sale flyers along your street or neighborhood.
  • Set a fundraising goal: 20 luminaria averaging $10 donation each = $200 per host.
  • Collect donations and deliver luminaria bags to donors,  encourage everyone to decorate them.
  • Remind donors to set out decorated luminarias on September 20.
  • Turn in your donations to your American Cancer Society contact.

If you are interested in volunteering as a neighborhood host or purchasing luminaria, please contact Andrea Woodfield at Andrea.Whitesides@cancer.org or call 704-674-3214.