This week, Alaska says “see ya ’round, Boss Lady!” as we send Sarah Robinson off from the wilds of her Alaska roots, to the wilds of the streets of Seattle/Freemont/Queen Anne to continue her stellar work with the American Cancer Society.
By now, most have heard of the “T” word (transition) that the American Cancer Society is making – reorganizing itself, stream-lining, using the monies that the VOLUNTEERS raise prudently and wisely, and bringing it back to where it all started 100 years ago – to the grass-roots (aka: that means YOU AND ME!!)
As Gordy Klatt has so famously said: The Relayers raise the money, the money goes to Research, Research kills cancer, therefore Relayers kill cancer. So in this next 100 years, as we transition, we are going to get LOUD, we are going to continue to be passionate, we are going to get MORE people involved, MORE BUSINESSES/CORPORATIONS involved so that NO ONE EVER has to hear the words: “You have cancer” again.
It is not just a weekend event folks: CANCER NEVER SLEEPS, which means the fight against cancer is a 365 day a year event – from dogs, to coaches, to kids, to golfers, to football players, to co-workers, neighbors and family members and more. It is garage sales to art sales, from auctions to tournaments – IT’s ALL of it!!!
And you know who taught me that a dozen or so years ago? Sarah……..
Oh sure, I had been involved with Relay For Life, but not to the extent that Sarah had encouraged me to be when we moved up here to Alaska. She encouraged me to always be involved at whatever level I could, even as I battled my 11th bout with cancer – we can ALWAYS be an “advocate”!!
Sure, there will continue to be transitions as we celebrate our 47th newest Nobel laureate, as we tweak and try new programs and let others go to rest, but the bottom line is that it is up to YOU and ME to make that difference. WE can be the drivers for Road to Recovery. We can volunteer to help with Reach to Recovery or a support group or ‘Look Good, Feel Better’. We can make meals, we can make phone calls, we can drop SNAIL mail cards (ok, emails, too or Facebook!) – all to say that the more of us in this PEOPLE’S FIELD ARMY of the 2000’s CAN and WILL make a difference – one step at a time.
So we here in Alaska have a double transition to make…..it won’t be easy. Change never is. Saying good-bye to Sarah is bitter-sweet – but at least knowing Alaska will still be in her Great West Division Relay For Life and Strides territory, the sting is eased a bit. (Just a ‘little’ bit!!) But having watched Sarah grow into the incredible, young business woman who has made her mark in a HUGE way in Alaska, makes up for the sting we will feel. Because WE know the mark she is going to make in 12 states and across the country as well.
The ‘cheese’ will never stand alone – because WE have Sarah!!
Care Tuk is a nationally known speaker, educator, and retreat/workshop leader. She has been a school, hospital, and home health occupational therapist for more than 30 years. She has been named as a Top Business Woman in America and recognized for her work with youth, disability outreach and awareness, and the American Cancer Society.