Congratulations to Bob H., the 2015 Twin Cities 3-Day Milestone Award Winner

The Susan G. Komen 3-Day® Milestone Award is given at each event to a walker or crew member who has an outstanding history of participation in the Komen 3-Day. At the Twin Cities 3-Day camp show, we presented Bob Howard with this special honor. Bob is walking in his ninth 3-Day® in the Twin Cities this year, having previously walked seven times in Arizona and once in Philadelphia.

When asked what first got him involved with the 3-Day, Bob responded, “It’s actually a little embarrassing, but the first year I walked was essentially on a dare. I had a friend who had done the 3-Day, and I said ‘I can do that, heck it’s just walking…’ Boy did I have a lot to learn!” While his initial motivation to take on the 3-Day was lighthearted, Bob’s real inspiration came two years later when his wife was diagnosed with breast cancer. “It was then that it took on a whole new meaning for me.”

Bob and Coach Stephanie at the Twin Cities 3-Day

Bob and Coach Stephanie at the Twin Cities 3-Day

In almost a decade of walking in the 3-Day, Bob has raised more than $55,000. He credits his fundraising success largely to his work family. “I work for a company that matches donations every year. I’m really very fortunate, to work with people who are so giving.” And what if someone doesn’t have such a generous network through their jobs? Bob assures them that generous people are everywhere. “I always tell people who are trying to get donations to ‘JUST ASK!’ Everyone knows someone whose life has been touched by cancer, and most people are happy to give what they can to help put an end to this disease.”

With Bob’s history of giving his time and energy to the 3-Day, it’s hard to believe his answer when we asked him what brings him back year after year: “It’s sort of a selfish thing. Aside from the event being very emotional and rewarding, it just makes me feel good. When I read about the advances that are being made in breast cancer research and treatment each year, it makes me realize the importance each of us plays in putting an end to this disease. When I see the survivors and hear people’s stories, I feel that we can make a difference.”

Just in case you’re not already inspired by Bob’s great attitude, we think you’ll like his advice to his fellow 3-Day walkers: “Enjoy the walk, look around at things while you walk, just enjoy the moments. When I feel I cannot walk another step, I think of the reasons I joined the 3-Day, I think of how much suffering so many women who have had this disease have gone through, and the pain they must have endured, and somehow I find that my pain is nothing and then I find the energy to keep walking.”

Bob, your energy, passion and dedication are truly moving. From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you for the amazing mark you have left on the 3-Day community.

BC Babes: Fundraising Powerhouse

Spaghetti dinners. Car washes. Restaurant nights. Bake sales. Garage sales. Facebook. These are all ways that the BC Babes, a Michigan powerhouse team that is currently 42 members strong, have raised money for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day. They boldly set their goal high – aiming to get as close to $1,000,000 as they could.

The BC Babes includes 25 walkers, 16 crew members, and 1 Youth Corps member, and is led by co-captains Beth and Heather. We had some time to talk to Beth about the BC Babes and their quest for reaching this goal (as of the time I write this, they’ve currently raised nearly $946,000), and we hope you find their story as inspiring as we do!

Members of the BC Babes at the 2014 Michigan 3-Day

Members of the BC Babes at the 2014 Michigan 3-Day

Beth’s Komen 3-Day journey began as a family affair.

“The first year I walked with my oldest sister, Debbie, then my youngest sister, Michelle, (2003) and my third year walking (2005) I convinced by middle sister, Jeanne, to walk with me, and the BC Babes were born. I had met several other first time walkers at a Get Started Meeting and they asked if they could train with us since I had already done the walk several times and over the course of the first few months of training my sister and I formed the team.

“Over the years, I’ve had four teammates diagnosed with breast cancer, either during or after their 3-Day experience (thankfully, all are survivors today). Last year we lost our first teammate, Sr. Carol Juhasz, to breast cancer,” she said. “One of our newest Babes, Tracey A., walked in her first 3-Day last year. Her mother was a breast cancer survivor and she also had a cousin undergoing treatment for breast cancer. Tracey was walking to support these wonderful women in her life and came to our team through a 3-Day Meet-Up. After that evening Tracey came out and trained with the Babes, joining our team shortly after that first meeting. Her mom’s cancer came back late last year and has undergone treatment/surgery since that time and is doing very well. Tracey will once again be a part of the BC Babes family knowing the monies raised through this amazing weekend is one of the reasons her mom and cousin are here with her today,” she said.

These very personal reasons serve as a driving force for how Beth is able to manage her team and inspire them all to fundraise and train. “I monitor the fundraising of the team on a regular basis. If I see someone is not progressing I talk with them to make sure they’ve got a letter our or a fundraising strategy in place. As team, while training, we offer a variety of suggestions to help them if they’ve hit a dry spell. We’re always there to help anyone who is truly making their best effort to fundraise, and we do want to see that you have put this [fundraising] as a priority in your 3-Day adventure,” she said.

Beth is also quick to point out that she couldn’t lead the team on her own, and applauds her co-captain, Heather, for helping to keep this amazing team on track. “Heather has been my co-captain and fellow training walk leader for about 6 years now. We mostly keep in contact with the team through emails, but since both Heather and I are training walk leaders we see the Babes on a regular basis at training walks and keep up with them while walking,” she said.

Members of the BC Babes yesterday with Dr. Sheri Prentiss, National Spokesperson for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day

Members of the BC Babes yesterday with Dr. Sheri Prentiss, National Spokesperson for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day

And what does it feel like, to look out among the sea of pink on Friday morning, and know that more than 42 people in the crowd are part of the BC babes? “It’s an amazing feeling. I’ve been blessed to have been a part of the Opening Ceremony several times and seeing my Babes family out there warms my heart! The love, dedication and kindness they show not only to fellow Babes but to the entire 3-Day family just makes me happy!” On behalf of the entire 3-Day family, we thank people like the BC Babes and all of you, for doing everything you can to help end breast cancer forever.

More Ways to Thank Your 3-Day Donors

As we approach the start of the 2015 Susan G. Komen 3-Day® season, you are probably seeing an uptick in donations coming in. At the end of last year, we shared some ways to thank your Komen 3-Day donors after your event is over, but we thought you might also like some ideas of ways to thank them during your 3-Day®.

Carry Them With You – Many walkers find thoughtful and creative ways to recognize and bring their donors along with them while they walk. You can write their names (and the names of the people whom they donated in honor or in memory of) on pink ribbons that you wear on your hat or waist pack. You can inscribe their names on a t-shirt. If you’re feeling very creative, names of donors could also be celebrated on fairy wings, a cape or a tutu.2014_3DAY_MI_BC_0103

Make Your Gratitude Social – Chances are you will be updating your social media throughout your 3-Day weekend anyway, so be sure to take some of those posting breaks to tag and thank your donors too. They’re the ones who helped get you to the 3-Day, so it makes perfect sense to recognize them publicly on your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram as you post from the road.

Say Thank You With a Photo – A great way to thank your donors is to take a picture of you at the 60-mile banner on Day 3 and turn it into a photo card. There are countless websites (Shutterfly, Tiny Prints, Snapfish, etc.) where you can create photo cards, and adding this personal touch brings your thank you notes to a whole new level. If you’re part of a team, think about making it a team photo card; then you can order in bulk and everyone can use them!

Dedicate a Mile – Taking the photo thank you idea one step further, you could dedicate a mile to each of your donors (assuming you have 60 or fewer!). Make a small tribute card with the mile number and the donor’s name, then snap a quick picture of you holding the card when you reach that point on the route. You can post these on social media and/or send the pictures to your donors after the event is over.IMG_0338

Renew Your Commitment – A perfect way to show your donors how grateful you are for their support and how dedicated you are to ending breast cancer is to renew your own commitment and register for a 2016 3-Day event. Walker registration for all seven events will open on August 11.

 

These are just a few ideas, but you can let your creativity take you anywhere when it comes to showing your thanks.