This year, the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk was unlike any other before. Students and members of the local community were invited to attend a virtual breast cancer awareness walk in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a month dedicated to raising awareness and funds to find a cure for the disease that affects 1 in 8 women in the U.S.
The Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk is the culminating event of Breast Cancer Awareness Month at Kean. It is a time when the community gathers to walk and show their support and sense of community in standing up for this cause. This year, the breast cancer awareness walk was able to be held virtually.
With 82 participants, the Center for Leadership and Services (CLS) was able to gather people in the Kean community who were willing to continue to show their activism and volunteerism despite the prohibitive circumstances brought on by the global pandemic. Participants joined a Zoom call and walked in their own neighborhoods for as long as they wanted, in honor of those who struggle with and have lost their lives to breast cancer.
"The walk this year looked different than previous years because of COVID-19. Although the walk happened virtually through Zoom, the energy was so positive and exciting, it felt like we were in person walking! It was amazing to see how many Kean students, along with friends and family, came out to raise awareness for breast cancer. We are so thankful for our volunteers who came out Sunday morning to walk with us, and we are also so impressed by the beautifully decorated cars that volunteers sent to us," said Mckenzie Alter, service specialist with the Center for Leadership and Service.
Alter continued, "Not only did we have a walk, but we also had a virtual car parade in which volunteers decorated their car and drove around their local towns to raise awareness for breast cancer. The effort that all students put into Sunday's breast cancer events was humbling and inspiring. I want to shout out the amazing community service staff that helped to make this all possible."
Collectively, CLS and everyone who attended the virtual walk traveled a total of 4,162 minutes of walking, which equates to 69 hours or 2.89 days. They were also able to collect over $500 in donations, to be donated to the American Cancer Society to help fund and raise awareness for breast cancer and cancer research, an astounding accomplishment for this one-of-a-kind event. For anyone still looking to make contributions to breast cancer research and awareness, donations can be made directly to the American Cancer Society.