Relay for Life South of the James exceeds 2022 fundraising goal – Richmond Times-Dispatch | Region & Cash

By Laura McFarland Editor-in-Chief

POWHATAN — Powhatan and Chesterfield Counties have joined forces in the fight against cancer to help the combined Relay for Life South of the James teams not only meet the goal, but exceed it for the 2022 season.

Relay for Life South of the James, which held its annual event June 11 at Midlothian High School, had raised $120,568 as of Friday, well above this year’s goal for the two districts of $100,000.

Looking back on what the teams have achieved this year, Events Director Pat Johnson said she is incredibly proud of the attendance and the funds raised going towards the fight against cancer and supporting those fighting the disease.

“My thought was how many lives have we saved with this money that can be used for research? How many people have we helped with rides or Hope Lodge? It just amazed me that so many people have reached into their pockets, whether it was a $500 donation or a $5,000 donation, and donated to a cause they care about,” he said you.

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Attendees at the event did hit the $100,000 goal on June 23, but continued their fundraising efforts, she said. Corporate sponsorships accounted for about a quarter of the funds raised, and this combined with team sponsorships, corporate games and daily earnings such as luminaries and on-site fundraising.

The actual Relay for Life event on June 11 performed well this year, raising $10,537 that day alone, said Stephanie Pugh, a fellow at the American Cancer Society.

It was an outstanding season of Relay for Life with teams running successful team and individual fundraisers that eventually led to the event reaching its goal earlier this year. Pugh commended those attending the combined Powhatan and Chesterfield event and what they had accomplished throughout the year. A big highlight of the season was also that the sponsorship committee and other participants more than doubled the sponsorship money compared to the previous year.

“We have seen many great successes this year with Relay for Life events within the American Cancer Society. Season for Life of South of the James was the first season in Virginia to surpass the goal this year,” she said.

Funds raised through events like Relay for Life provide important dollars to advance the American Cancer Society’s mission, Pugh added. There are currently 13 active research grants between UVA and VCU totaling over $7.4 million.

“The American Cancer Society directly and measurably improves the lives of people living with cancer and their families by focusing on the core area of ​​patient support,” she said. “We help people find answers and resources, whether they want to help reduce their risk of cancer, understand a cancer diagnosis and treatment options, learn how to manage side effects, or provide transportation or housing in our Hope Lodge communities takes place when the treatment takes place far away from home.

“We work with healthcare providers, healthcare systems, and public health organizations in the United States and around the world to break down barriers for everyone across the cancer care continuum, resulting in higher screening and immunization rates, more effective patient support services, and better access to treatments and pain relief,” she continued away.

As they celebrate the achievements of the 2022 season, Johnson said she is already looking to the future and how organizers, teams and the public can help make the 2023 season even better.

Much of the 2023 Leadership Committee will return, including Johnson, but they are looking for volunteers to fill four key positions: Activities and Entertainment Chair, Fundraising and Recognition Chair, Marketing, Online and Social Communications Chair, and Registration Chair, Survivor and Caregiver.

Johnson said she hopes to have the 12-member executive committee in place by September to plan and have team meetings begin in early 2023. The group will meet in person, which is crucial for an event of this size spanning two counties, she added.

“We’re really looking for sponsors for 2023. We’re looking for teams for 2023. I need four strong people for the committee,” Johnson said.

Anyone interested in filling any of these positions can contact Pat Johnson at

Laura McFarland can be reached at

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