Numerous families, businesses and organizations have felt the impact of COVID-19 for the past several months. As the community struggles, so do our non-profits who support the Beaches community. Non-profits count on donations raised from events, fundraisers and more. As these events and fundraisers have come to a halt due to safety concerns, the fundraising and donations have as well. One local non-profit, The DONNA Foundation, has come up with a way to continue their yearly fundraising events in a safe and inclusive way.
The DONNA Foundation is a 501(C)3 nonprofit organization established in June 2003 which provides financial assistance for the critical needs of those living with breast cancer. Their mission is to provide economic assistance and emotional support to individuals living with breast cancer and fund groundbreaking breast cancer research. To date, The DONNA Foundation has served more than 13,500 families by providing more than $5 million dollars in relief. Additionally, they helped to develop and maintain the Mayo Clinic Breast Cancer Translational Genomics Program. Ongoing funding from the foundation makes it possible for the laboratory team to not only conduct state-of-the-art breast cancer research, including the widely-publicized Triple Negative Breast Cancer Vaccine Trials, but also to provide genomics support for studies in all cancers. The DONNA Foundation is committed to supporting families in need and ultimately, finishing breast cancer.
One of their main events each year is Donna Marathon Weekend. This National Marathon to Finish Breast Cancer is the only marathon in the US dedicated to breast cancer research and care. For over 13 years, the DONNA Marathon held each February has filled the hearts and streets of our Beaches with thousands of runners from all 50 states, many countries and of course, so many locals who train and look forward to the celebratory weekend. With this large of a turn out and many of them being high-risk cancer survivors, The DONNA Foundation has recently made the tough decision to make all of their events virtual until Spring 2021 for the health and safety of the race participants and our community. They are calling this campaign “Everywhere, Together.”
“This decision — like many, these days — was not made lightly,” said Amanda Napolitano, Executive Director of The DONNA Foundation. “Our events provide crucial funding for the DONNA CareLine, including direct financial support for patients and families, and groundbreaking research through our partnership with the Mayo Clinic. But more than that, DONNA finish lines represent a celebration of survivorship for those living with or impacted by breast cancer, and a commitment to the health and wellness of our community. We simply cannot celebrate survivorship together in person, without the very people we are there to celebrate. But we will celebrate, Everywhere, Together.”
Updates and Virtual Events
As of July 1 The DONNA Foundation launched its “Everywhere, Together” campaign and opened registration for all DONNA events, including THE PLAYERS DONNA 5K presented by Nimnicht Family of Dealerships (Oct. 24-25, 2020), DONNA Marathon Weekend (Feb. 12-14, 2021) and a new Mother’s Day Your Way event (May 8-9, 2021). You may register for each event individually, or participate in all three as a part of their virtual DONNA Fearless Series. Through the Foundation’s “Everywhere, Together” campaign, each of these experiences will be delivered through a virtual platform designed to bring the love and excitement of DONNA events to neighborhoods around the world, while safely distancing for the vulnerable population the foundation serves. Runners and supporters can learn more and register at www.BreastCancerMarathon.com.
Also new in the coming year, runners can recruit friends and earn cash back on their own registration. As an incentive for participation, registrants can share their individual referral link (provided once registered) and they will receive a rebate on their registration fee once certain milestones are hit. This promotion is valid through August 31, 2020, so register early and help spread the word.
There are multiple ways to help The DONNA Foundation and other organizations like them. Consider donating, volunteering and more. Even just sharing this post can make a difference and help us all get one step closer to #FinishingBreastCancer and support so many families locally that need assistance now more than ever. #TogetherWeWill