Congratulations to Stephanie C., the Philadelphia 3-Day Milestone Award Winner!

Congratulations to Stephanie C., the Susan G. Komen Philadelphia 3-Day Milestone Award Winner! The 2014 Philadelphia 3-Day is Stephanie’s 7th 3-Day, after having done her first 3-Day in Philadelphia in 2006. Stephanie has also crewed one time in Philadelphia in 2012, an experience that she really enjoyed, noting, “I was on trash clean-up and I loved it.”

Over the years, Stephanie has raised over $135,000; an incredible amount that has no doubt helped change many lives. What’s one of Stephanie’s fundraising tricks? “Do something that is FUN! I hold a golf outing each year and each year I have been able to increase sponsorship fees because I ensure my guests enjoy the day. I now have a following that I believe I will be able to sustain as long as I have the energy,” Stephanie said. Stephanie started hosting the golf outings in 2009, and they end up being big fundraisers for her, sometimes netting more than $20,000.

Like many others who embark on their 3-Day journey, Stephanie joined the 3-Day after a friend who had been touched by breast cancer asked her to walk. “My motto is always that I will try something once and if I don’t like it I don’t have to do it again. I got injured on my first 3-Day in 2006, so I waited two years to walk and my inspiration since then has been all those that have been afflicted by this dreaded disease,” said Stephanie.

As a seasoned 3-Dayer, what is it about the 3-Day that keeps Stephanie coming back? Stephanie describes the moment she knew was coming back when “survivors walked into Villanova stadium after my first 3-Day. I had trained and trained and trained and it was not real until I looked around as all the participants took off their sneakers to pay tribute to the survivors who had the strength to do the walk. It was a humbling and overwhelming experience and even after six walks – I still cry.” (So do we, Stephanie.)

When asked to share her best advice for those new to the 3-Day family, Stephanie said to never underestimate the importance of stretching, and above all, to have fun. “The most important thing is to have fun. I talk to new people and enjoy my surroundings (especially when walking in new places). Anyone who is out there walking is blessed and I am thankful that God has given me the strength and tenacity to make the trek each year. Sixty miles is nothing compared to what those that are battling cancer deal with.”

After raising $135,000 and walking over 360 miles total, Stephanie has one more thing to tell you. “Remember – you make a difference. No matter how small – it adds up to be immense,” she said. We couldn’t agree more.

Healthy Hooters: Because Your Battle is Our Battle.

In July, the Susan G. Komen Facebook page shared a beautiful photo and story that was heard around the Internet: after 26-year-old Brittany B. was diagnosed with breast cancer, her boyfriend proposed at a surprise pre-surgery party. As Brittany embarked on her treatment, a very special friend of her embarked on her own journey: fundraising $2,300 and walking 60 miles so that fewer women and men around the world ever have to hear the words “You have breast cancer.” Meet Jackie S., of Healthy Hooters, who is walking her first Susan G. Komen 3-Day® in Philadelphia this weekend.

Brittany B and Jackie P Susan G Komen 3 Day Philly Walk to End Breast Cancer

Why does Jackie walk? Because Brittany’s battle is her battle.

Jackie was initially asked to join the Komen 3-Day by some of her team members, the Healthy Hooters. The Healthy Hooters is a team made up of neighbors in their Downingtown neighborhood of Pennsylvania. The Healthy Hooters are all new participants, and their past and current experiences with breast cancer brought them all together. Team Captain Melany walks in memory of both of her grandmothers, both affected by breast cancer, and in honor of her friend Michelle, a 36-year-old breast cancer survivor. Team members Kristy and Sara both walk in honor of their breast cancer survivor moms, team member Megan walks in honor of a family friend and team members Janis and Heather also walk for family and friends affected by breast cancer.

Team Healthy Hooters celebrates victory after Day 1 at Camp

Team Healthy Hooters celebrates victory after Day 1 at Camp

Like many other new 3-Dayers, Jackie initially had concerns about joining the 3-Day. “I went back and forth for about three weeks thinking I wanted to, but was always worried about fundraising. My heart eventually lead me to my decision. Eight days after I signed up, Brittany was diagnosed.” Jackie and Brittany have been close friends for eight years, and Jackie calls Brittany her “Little Sister.” “I have no siblings, so to have someone in my life to fill this role has been such a blessing,” said Jackie.

Brittany is more than halfway done with her treatment, and a quick search of her Instagram hashtag, #beitelstrong, shows how many people are rooting her on and showing support. You can follow her journey through the Susan G. Komen Facebook page.

As the team wraps up Day 1 of their 3-Day journey, I ask them if they have any thing they’d like to say now that they’ve conquered 21.5 miles around beautiful Philadelphia.  Their unanimous rallying cry? “Your battle is our battle.”

Jackie adds, “60 miles is nothing compared to the journey that loved ones are going through with breast cancer.  You can do this. You can’t go through life being a spectator. You have to be a participant.” Every day, we’re so grateful to all of our participants – walkers, crew and volunteers, for being such a passionate part of our fight to end breast cancer.

 

Part 5 of the ABCs of the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Crew

Welcome to the fifth and final installment of the ABC’s of the Susan G. Komen 3-Day® Crew! We’ve shared letters A – E, F – J, K – O, P – T, and this week, we’re excited to bring you the final six letters. Please tell us your ideas for each letter here or on Facebook, and share these images with your family and friends. (To see the Komen 3-Day walker version of the ABC’s, click here!)

susan g. komen 3-day breast cancer walk crew volunteer university training

Crew University is a series of recorded, online training sessions designed to get 3-Day® crew members up to speed on what the 3-Day is all about, and provide details about their specific crew jobs. All 3-Day crew members have access to Crew U. in their Participant Centers, and are encouraged to watch the recordings that apply to them before they come to the All Crew Kick-off.

 

susan g. komen 3-day breast cancer walk crew volunteer Every 3-Day crew member is a volunteer (they’re paid in hugs, high fives and heartfelt gratitude) who works all three days of the event, but there are also numerous other volunteer opportunities for folks who may not be able to fulfill the full crew commitment. From outreach and recruitment, to training and motivating participants, to on-event roles and responsibilities, there is a volunteer program to fit your schedule, skills and passions on the 3-Day.

susan g. komen 3-day breast cancer walk crew volunteer western shelterTo most walkers, they may just look like pink-covered beacons you see from afar, telling you that you’ve reached a stop at last. But to a 3-Day crew member, these open-air tents, called Western Shelters, are an essential part of the pit stops, grab & go’s and lunch stop. Crew members work together to quickly and safely assemble the structures, ensuring that your beloved grahamwiches are kept shaded.

See also: Walkie-talkies

susan g. komen 3-day breast cancer walk crew volunteer x tent sectionThe 3-Day camp is divided into tent sections to help participants find their little pink homes amidst a sea of tents. Crew members “live” in section X and Y, which are kept a little bit separate from the walker sections (so the crew members, with their early mornings and late nights, don’t bother the sleeping walkers).

See also: eXcellence (one of the “STEPS” that make up the foundation of the 3-Day Crew culture and philosophy)

susan g. komen 3-day breast cancer walk crew volunteer youth corpsThe 3-Day Youth Corps is a select group of young people (10-16 years old) who participate as crew members on the event. The yellow-shirted Youth Corps members attend the entire 3-Day event (accompanied by a small group of adult leaders), camp with the participants and complete a multitude of important tasks both on the route and in camp (the most important of which is enthusiastically cheering on the walkers). The Youth Corps is the only crew team that is required to fundraise; each Youth Corps member must raise at least $500 by the time of their event in order to participate and most kids exceed the minimum by leaps and bounds.

susan g. komen 3-day breast cancer walk crew volunteer zip tiesDuct tape is great, but on the 3-Day, the go-to tools for holding stuff together–from route arrows to pit stop decorations to event signage—are zip ties.

 

We’ve reached the end of the alphabet, but the conversation doesn’t have to stop! Tell us what those 26 letters mean to you, as a walker, crew member or supporter!