2016, a record year for Relay For Life Belgium

  • 66 829 runners in 1443 teams

  • 3208 survivors

  • 3 321 962 euros for the fight against cancer

  • >10 million euros in 6 years

More than 3,3 million euros. That’s how many the volunteers of Relay For Life Belgium have raised in 1 year. Every year the 24-hour solidarity- and fundraising event against cancer gains popularity, both with the sympathizers as well as with the Survivors (people who have/had cancer). This year more than 6500 team members in 25 communities walked different Relay-tracks to show more than 3200 survivors that they don’t have to be all alone. In the sixth year of existence of Relay For Life, we passed 10 million euros of fundraising against cancer.

The popularity of Relay For Life is heartwarming. “The numbers of 2016 are overwhelming, Relay For Life has become a real solidarity movement in Belgium” says Brecht Gunst, National Coordinator for Relay For Life.

“But the real power of Relay For Life is in the atmosphere and the support and strength the survivors get from this event”.

Relay For Life through the eyes of two survivors (people who once heard “you have cancer”)

“Relay for life is the event of the year. You always encounter people who understand you with one simple glance. The support you get as a survivor from family, friends and acquaintances, but also from the present volunteers is priceless. The emotional rollercoaster is tremendous. At every Relay you also encounter people you know, because Relayers look for each other. (…) Every cancer patient, what origin they’re from, can feel at home at a Relay For Life. They’re the VIP’s…” Agnes Put, survivor since 2008. 

“Relay For Life is an event that changes a life. It’s a combination of individual needs that are shared with others; in a mutual strive to beat cancer. Relay For Life is so unique because it focuses on all patients, no matter their type of cancer, and it assembles whole communities behind one goal.” Cindy Menache, survivor since 2005.

In 2011, Stichting tegen Kanker imported the concept from the USA, with a modest 3 events in Belgium. In a few years time it has become an unstoppable action of solidarity against cancer, with 25 events throughout Belgium. The solidarity often gives the survivors that most needed boost, and the money they raised goes entirely to the fight against cancer.

“Thanks to Relay For Life, the Belgian Cancer Foundation can invest even more in the fight against cancer. Our priority is and remains to support research, but we also help patients and their caregivers to face this disease as well as they can and we also encourage everyone to live a healthy life by not smoking, to avoid tanning beds, … We also want to inform: everyone can reach out to Cancer info with all their questions about cancer or for psychological support, by calling our free number 0800 15 802 and www.cancer.be/info.

And with all these initiatives against the disease we get the indispensable support from Relay For Life and everyone who supports Relay For Life. Thank you to everyone who support Relay For Life and the fight against cancer in general!” says Brecht Gunst.

Numbers 5 year Relay For Life

 

Number Relays

Teams

Survivors

Participants

Incomings

Voluteers in the Organization

2011

3

91

186

1214

€ 116 762

55

2012

6

258

347

4586

€ 494 291

100

2013

8

440

954

12711

€ 1 060 498

249

2014

16

1082

1781

37 187

€ 2 550 000

400

2015

23

1388

2976

56 075

€ 3 220 932

670

2016 (until now)

25

1443

3193

65 764

> € 3,3 millions

720

Head sponsor AXA Belgium has contributed an important amount to Relay For Life. The efforts of the company isn’t only limited to the financial and logistic support: over 300 employees, estate agents and bank agents from the company were present at different Relays as a volunteer of AXA Hearts In Action. They showed their best side and did fundraising to give an extra push to this initiative. Thanks!

 

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