Friday, September 14, 2007

LIVESTRONG Summit – One Year Later

I was thinking about the LIVESTRONG Summit last night and how it is almost one year since the event. I still remember Lance and Doug stating how we (the state delegates) were there to work and get inspired. I did not know at the time where I would be one year later. Was I going to procrastinate or would I take the bull by the horns?

I am pleased to say one year later I have exceeded my initial Personal Action Plan (PAP) goals.

Coming out of the Summit my goal was to help educate the public on cancer, early detection methods, the Lance Armstrong Foundation and what they are doing to fight cancer. I planned on guest speaking at schools and colleges to help educate. My original goal morphed over time.

Here are a few highlights of what I have done this year

  • I have created this blog to speak about cancer, news, the LAF and what I do to help in the fight.
  • I created a website that consolidates all cancer news into one website using RSS feeds. It is the first of its kind and I have received great feedback.
  • I became a LIVESTRONG Challenge participant and fundraiser for the LAF.
  • Created Team DOWN ONE and got 27 family and friends to join the fight
  • Team DOWN ONE Raised over $22,100 for the LAF
  • Got over 400 people involved (donations, events, etc.)
  • I have been in the Media.....
  • Ocean County Observer article on my LIVESTRONG summit experience
  • Ocean County Observer article on my LIVESTRONG Challenge participation and fundraising efforts
  • 92.7 WOBM FM Breakfast Show interview
  • 92.7/1160 WOBM FM/AM Topic A Show interview
  • 92.7 WOBM FM Hometown View with Kevin Williams spotlight
  • This school year I will be guest speaking in the Philadelphia school district and area on testicular cancer, my experience and the importance of early detection.

My PAP goal was the educating and I realized after my first interview and news article in November 2006 that I already started the public education. The staff writer for the Ocean County Observer, Carolynne Van Houten, was the first one to point that out. She thanked me for getting the word out to the public. She told me it helps to get the word out on cancer and what organization, like the LAF, are doing for survivors. That is the first time I knew I was making a difference.

Though it was hard work I am already thinking of different fundraising events for the next year. I thoroughly enjoyed putting together the events with my family and friends. I not only wanted to raise money for the LAF, but I also looked at it as HOW MANY PEOPLE CAN I GET INVOLVED. The more people we have fighting with us the better chance we have of one day eradicating the disease.

There is still a lot of work to be done. Everyday I think about how I can make a difference in the fight against cancer. I will never stop adding to my initial PAP and I will always remember the LIVESTRONG Summit. As I have said in the past, it is my obligation as a cancer survivor to make a difference.