Harding will be hosting the annual Relay for Life on the front lawn tonight beginning at 5 p.m. and ending 5 a.m. Saturday morning.
Relay for Life is a fundraising community walk that gives awareness and support to the American Cancer Society (ACS) with the hope of one day finding a cure for cancer. Thirty-three organizations and social clubs will set up booths to fundraise for the ACS.
Students, faculty and community members spend 12 hours walking the Front Lawn to symbolize an ongoing battle against cancer for individuals and their families. e walking in the light represents the discovery of cancer, night represents the feeling of fear regarding the physical and mental e ects of the disease, and dawn represents overcoming of cancer.
Lisa Bryant, assistant special education teacher, is the on-campus faculty advisor for Relay for Life. Bryant has participated in Relay since 2003 when she lost her mother to cancer, and she is a former event chair of the White County Relay. After her mother’s death, she promised her children that they would do what they could to help.
“I promised them that we would do everything that we could so that no other little boys would lose their Mimi’s,” Bryant said. “And I promised them that they wouldn’t have to grow up without a grandmother.”
The theme for Relay this year is “Get Your Heart in the Game.” For the theme, each club’s booth will sell an activity and food based on the theme.
“ ere is no reason you shouldn’t come to this event,” sophomore and Relay committee member Carson Gentry said. “ ere is a variety of activities and snacks, and every- thing you do supports research to save lives. It is a win.”
to an increase in participation, the fundraising goal this year is $18,000. According to Bryant, half of that has already been raised.
“I think (Relay) is important because it gives Harding students a chance to get involved in something by having fun with everyone while also helping a cause,” junior participant Maria Cofer said. “I go because I know so many people that have been positively affected by Relay for Life; and by supporting Relay for Life, I support those people that I know and love.”
Relay is open to students and the community. There will be a survivor lap after the opening ceremony for the survivors from campus or anyone who is a cancer survivor. They will receive a purple shirt and will walk the lap with their families.
“They don’t have to go by themselves,” Bryant said. “People don’t fight cancer by themselves, it is a group effort.”