Posts Tagged ‘charity’

Relay for Life 2012

April 1, 2012


Last night, Pearl and I slept rough in a local park.  Although, to be truthful, there was very little sleeping.  There was quite a lot of walking, and some running.  Pearl was very excited to be up and on the Relay track at midnight, walking with her cousin and young friends.  We each did our assigned three 30-minute shifts, and walked alongside our team-mates at various other times as well.  There’s something very special about walking the track with friends in the small hours of the morning, looking up at the stars, chatting, listening to the music.

Pearl & her cousin run a lap in the Relay For Life 2012

We decorated candle bags in memory of family and friends, and stood sombrely with all the other relayers during the touching memorial service.

Candle Bags

There were 13 hearts on my bag this year, 13 precious people to remember. That's two more than last year, and thirteen too many to have lost.

Our team had set a fundraising goal of $200 per team member.  Thanks to family, friends, Pearl’s badge sales, and my sweet-toothed colleagues who ate as much white-chocolate fudge as I could provide them with at $2 per bag, the two of us raised over $570 – thank you, everyone!  That money will help the NZ Cancer Society to:

  •  provide people affected with cancer with important support and resources
  •  fund the volunteer driving service (free service to those undergoing cancer treatment – they are picked up by volunteer drivers, taken to their appointments and the volunteers wait for them and take them home again)
  • operate the free phone line 0800CANCER – any cancer any question
  • offer counselling and support to people with cancer and their caregivers
  • help make schools SunSmart and work towards a smokefree NZ
  • support people with their accommodation when they have to travel for treatment
  • fund vital cancer research into the causes and treatments of cancer

(Info above provided by the NZ Cancer Society).

You can still donate here.  If you know our names in real life, sponsor us! If not, sponsor anyone, make their day!

Of course, Relay is not all sombre.  Far from it!  There were laughs and hijinks, entertainment and giveaways, impromptu performances and some truly execrable karaoke about 1am.  There were free massages provided, and a very welcome hot breakfast served by volunteers.

We came home exhausted, footsore, chilled, and feeling a bit grimy… and well aware that anyone undergoing cancer treatment feels a whole lot worse, for a whole lot longer.  But we’re also proud of ourselves and our team, and grateful for the support of friends, family – and blog readers! – for such a great cause.

Susan remembered on the big screen at Relay For Life 2012.

© UpsideBackwards 2012.


March 8, 2012

I got a phone-call at work today, from daycare.  My heart sank.  Usually these calls mean someone is sick.  But the teacher hastily said, “There’s nothing wrong!  I’m calling to tell you about something sweet that Babess did today.”

Babess was with a small group of children on a trip this morning and they were walking through town.  A woman was sitting on the footpath with a sign in front of her.  Babess and some of the other big girls are getting quite interested in words and reading, and they asked their teacher to tell them what the words on the sign said.

They said, “I have no income and no food.  Please help me.”

Babess was quite concerned by this.  She thought for a little bit, and – knowing that they would have morning tea when they reached their destination – asked the teacher what food they had.

“Well, we have some crackers…” replied the teacher.

“Can we please give the lady some crackers?” asked Babess.  Touched, the teacher gave her a bag of crackers, and Babess took them and gave them to the woman.  “Now she won’t be so hungry for a little while,” Babess told her friends.

Apparently the look on the woman’s face was priceless, too.

Afterwards, the teachers had a little chat with the children about approaching strangers in the street, and how it’s ok as long as the adult you’re with has said it’s ok (which is what had happened in this case) but you do have to check first.

Then the teachers called us to tell us about Babess’ charitable nature, and wrote it up for her profile book.

© UpsideBackwards 2012.


February 12, 2012

It was our annual village summer festival market day today, and Pearl joined a couple of her friends in setting up a stall.

Pearl at her stall

For the past couple of weeks we have been hard at work making felt badges for her to sell.  She has spent her evenings designing them, cutting out felt and applying glitter glue, and I have done lots of hot glueing.

This morning we went down to the park and helped set up, then she spent most of the next six hours attending the stall.  It was a long, hot, thirsty day.  She sold just under 20 badges.  A portion of her proceeds will go to the SPCA, and 50% to the Relay for Life as well.  (She didn’t sell enough to cover the costs of making them all, but since it’s for charity I will donate the materials).

I think she is quite disappointed she didn’t manage to sell more and raise more money – it was a lot of work and a very long day for relatively little return – but hopefully we will be able to sell more badges elsewhere (let me know if you want one!).  She has learnt that fundraising can be hard work, but also a bit about handling money and customers, keeping track of sales, and taking pride in your work.



© UpsideBackwards 2012.

Relay for Life 2012

January 29, 2012

We’re doing it again.  Pearl and I will run (walk) in our local Relay For Life event on 31 March this year.

The funds we raise will go to the NZ Cancer Society, to support cancer patients, survivors, and their families.

If you know us, and would like to sponsor us, you can donate here: Relay For Life.  If you don’t know us but would still like to donate, feel free!  Where it says “choose a team”, just pick one you like the sound of – the donations all go to the same place and that’s the important thing.

Other things you can do:

– join a team in your local relay – it’s a world-wide effort

– donate to your local Cancer Society

– think of a friend who has been touched by cancer (everyone knows someone), and send them a card telling them you love them.

This is a cause dear to my heart, and I’ll be blogging about it a bit in the coming months.

Celebrate, Remember, Fight Back!

© UpsideBackwards 2012.

Words I thought I’d never hear

October 23, 2010

At the supermarket last week, emergency services personnel gathered for a fundraising event.  They were supporting Canteen, a charity for teenagers with cancer.  A local radio station was there too, playing music and providing commentary.

There was no fire-engine, sadly, but there were firefighters, who gladly showed a wide-eyed Fainjin their helmets and jackets and admired his fireman-yellow raincoat.

Fainjin watched them for a little while, then turned to me and said “Mama, I don’t want to be a firefighter.”

I smothered a chuckle.  I had wondered whether the event would prompt him to reconsider his career ambitions.  The firefighters (and police, and ambulance crew) were being very brave, and chatting and smiling, which impressed me.  It must be quite difficult to keep a smile on your face while having your legs waxed, in public…

© UpsideBackwards 2010.

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