Hope from Home brings in more than $60,000 for cancer research

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The team Margie's Marchers lit 135 Luminaria bags for the Relay for Life's Hope From Home. The regular event was suspended in favor of a virtual fundraiser due to the pandemic. Courtesy photo
Luminaria bags from the Raindow Chasers team, part of the Relay for Life’s Hope from Home event last Sunday. Teams posted photos of themselves and other ways they marked the annual fundraiser. Courtesy photo

By Max Bowen-max.bowen@northstarreporter.com

Even amidst a global pandemic, hope continues.

The Greater-Attleboro Relay for Life, which raises tens of thousands each year for the American Cancer Society, held a virtual event called Hope From Home last Sunday. The organization made the decision to suspend any in-person events through the end of June due to the coronavirus pandemic. The decision affected both the 22nd annual Greater Attleboro Relay For Life, which had been scheduled June 12-13 at Norton High School, and the Relay For Life of Mansfield-Foxboro-Sharon, which had been scheduled June 20-21 at the Ahern Middle School in Foxboro.

Hope from Home was conducted in coordination with counterparts in Maine and New Hampshire, and raised a total of $61,487. It incorporated many of the themes that the June relays would have had, including Luminaira lit for cancer survivors or cancer victims and opening and closing ceremonies. Committee member Larry Kessler said that people brought the same intensity to the virtual event as they do in years prior.

People were as passionate and devoted to it as they always were,” said Kessler.

The event included videos made by volunteers and organizers explaining what Hope From Home was and the need for the virtual event. People talked about why they got involved with Relay for Life and the research being done at cancer centers. Teams posted photos of themselves and the Luminaria they lit in remembrance of those lost to cancer.

The Relay for Life usually brings in nearly $160,000, and Kessler said that people have been impacted by the business closure, and because the usual event wasn’t held, fundraising done on site wasn’t an option.

We needed the fundraising, especially in the middle of the pandemic,” said Kessler. “Cancer never goes away and we need help for the patients.”

For more information on the Greater Attleboro Relay and to make a donation, go to www.relayforlife.org/greaterattleboroma.