By Nailea Fabiola Ayala |Staff Writer|
It is astonishing to witness how
many young people care and want to help those affected by cancer.
CSUSB hosted its 5th Annual Colleges against Cancer (CAC) Relay for Life this Friday and Saturday.
The event took place on the lower commons patio to honor cancer survivors, while enjoying food, music and raising funds.
This was a 24-hour long event that kicked off at 3 p.m. Friday afternoon and ended at 3 p.m. the next day.
Motivational and informative quotes were written to remind everyone of the impact and difference made by the event.
The first challenge was at 3 p.m. after Pari Aryafar, the event planner, welcomed everyone to the race.
It takes a lot of time and dedication from students to bring this relay to life.
“We start planning and organizing one year prior to the event,” said student and Marketing Chair Shadya Qasem.
“The booths consist of venders selling goods for fundraising, information about cancer, games and other activities to encourage students and others to participate and stay up as long as they can,” explains Qasem.
Students were well prepared for the event, bringing tents and sleeping bags from home, which were set on the grass area.
Student Nayeli Maravillas, part of the planning committee mentioned “Cancer never sleeps, neither do we,” was the event motto.
The $10 dollar entrance fee was
part of the profits given to the American Cancer Society (ACS).
Dinner, drinks, and a number of other goodies were available for purchase at the event.
such as a photo booth, a DJ and a football game made it a fun atmosphere .
Maravillas has been relaying since she was 11 years old and this year was her fourth year at CSUSB’s event.
“My cousin was diagnosed with ovarian cancer so this relay is very important to me,” said Maravillas.
Cancer survivors were present and shared personal experiences of their battle against cancer.
The very personal Luminaria ceremony was celebrated after dark.
Paper bags are decorated with the name and drawing of a person lost or still fighting against cancer.
Candles lit the bags to look like lanterns and a moment of silence was dedicated to those who
have lost their lives to cancer.
“I’ve been relaying for 4 years now, and yes, I was invited to join relay after recently losing my mother to lung cancer. I decided to try it out and it became a way of coping with her passing. It also gave me a sense of love for charity and I’ve been a cancer awareness advocate ever since,” said Qasem.
Donations help ACS help find new approaches to therapies, improve cancer patient’s quality of life, and help to further research in the causes and cures of cancer.
Students helped make a difference and provide support for those still fighting against this disease.
CSUSB’s Colleges against Cancer is at $5,854, with their goal being $15,000.