Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge (DFMC) team members take on the ambitious responsibility of training to run 26.2 miles in the prestigious Boston Marathon® while also raising funds to support innovative basic cancer research. The runners take it on, but how do their running shoes feel about this exciting challenge? In Part II, we will continue looking at some of the best aspects of the DFMC experience – through the eyes of a pair of running shoes.
Important task at hand foot – a fundraising event
From day one, we’ve heard a lot about fundraising, including how best to plan a fundraising event. Here’s our favorite event idea so far: a PediCURE Party. Approach a local spa, and ask if they’re willing to host an event where $5 pedicures are given to all those who make a $25 or more gift toward the DFMC runner’s fundraising. Emphasize how the spa will benefit – attracting new spa clients, and showing the spa’s commitment to health and wellness in the local community.
Naturally, we would love to attend a PediCURE fundraiser, so we’re just waiting from someone to invite us. We’d also be open to a sock hop, or maybe something football related. We can’t wait to hear more creative fundraising ideas from our fellow teammates!
Research afoot– our first visit to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
As part of the DFMC experience, we get a chance to visit Dana-Farber, and we jump (literally) at the opportunity. What better way to understand the impact of our fundraising dollars than to walk through the hallways and labs where the research is actually happening.
On the day of our tour, we arrive in the lobby of the Yawkey Center for Cancer Care, and are greeted by a Barr Program investigator and a Running Programs staff member. The two lead us to a lab with incredibly sophisticated medical equipment, white boards filled with equations and notes, and several researchers donning white lab coats. The researchers explain the basics of what they’re working on, and get excited when the team asks questions. You can see and feel just how cutting-edge the work is, and it’s all happening right here in Boston.
The tour guide leads the group through Marathon Way, to the Zebrafish Display, over the Pan-Mass Bridge to Progress, and down to the Gene Display. The final stop is the Healing Garden. The beautiful flowers, plants, and benches welcome patients and families to sit in peace, and embrace the compassion and support that are huge parts of Dana-Farber’s mission. The tour reminded us that we’re part of something bigger, something that is truly making a difference, and we’re honored to be a part of it.
Support every step of the way
Asking questions about fundraising and marathon training is always encouraged. The veteran DFMC runners haven taken us under their wings, and made us feel at home. They’ve run beside us, talked about hydration and nutrition, and attended our fundraising events.
The support continues up the chain with the Dana-Farber Running Programs staff, as they answer every question with a smile and send Team Updates chock full of important information. They’ve helped guide us through every step of this process: from navigating the fundraising webpage, utilizing matching gifts from donor companies, and hosting lots of helpful events throughout the season.
There are so many great aspects of being a part of the DFMC team, and if you or your running shoes have ever had an inkling to run The Boston Marathon, or pay homage to a loved one affected by cancer, joining the DFMC team is a shoe-in to achieve both. If you and your running shoes are interested in joining the 2016 DFMC team, please apply.
Assistant Director, Development Communications