SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 Utah) – The Coronavirus pandemic creates extra challenges for organizations like the American Cancer Society that provide vital services and support to people in need. Catina Struble, Community Development Manager for ACS in Salt Lake City, says the organization is adjusting how it helps people with cancer, their caregivers and how ACS raises money to provide services and fund research.
Struble says the American Cancer Society would traditionally be hosting multiple relays around the state this time of year as part of its annual Relay For Life program, events where individuals and teams walk, run and stroll in a relay honoring those who lost their battle with cancer, celebrating survivors, thanking caregivers and raising money for ACS. But COVID-19 is impacting the relays this year, so ACS is hosting a virtual Relay For Life on Saturday, July 11, 2020. The even will from 5-9 p.m. and will include many of the same features you’d experience at an in-person relay. There will be an opening ceremony, a performance of the National Anthem, entertainment, games and challenges, and an actual opening relay lap. Survivors and caregivers will also share their stories and experiences during the virtual event, Struble adds. The event will also include the traditional luminaria ceremony to remember those who lost the fight against cancer and encourage those currently fighting.
Struble says the money raised during the event goes to support the American Cancer Society’s efforts to support people with cancer, their caregivers and research. Struble says ACS fights cancer and a number of levels, research is critical right now. ACS is currently helping to fund at least seven multi-year research programs totalling more than $3.9 million. ACS also overs a 24/7 National Cancer Information Center hotline where people can get information and answers to questions they may have about cancer.