Now 26 years strong, the Rays of Hope Walk & Run Toward the Cure of Breast Cancer on Sunday, Oct. 27, continues its “hope” for a generation without breast cancer.
Lucy Giuggio Carvalho was 38 when she was diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer in 1993. Thankful for the care she received at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, she decided to give back and formed Rays of Hope to help support breast cancer patients throughout their cancer journey and into survivorship.
Since it was founded in 1994, Rays of Hope has grown from 500 to over 20,000 participants and has raised over $14.8 million. All monies raised remain local and administered by the Baystate Health Foundation to assist patients and their families affected by breast cancer. Funds support the Rays of Hope Center for Breast Cancer Research, as well as treatment, breast health programs, outreach and education, and the purchase of state-of-the-art equipment through the Baystate Health Breast Network, and provides grants to various community programs throughout western Massachusetts.
A Call for Walkers and Runners
“As a five-year breast cancer survivor, I know that we must continue this fight together, as our call to action is far from over. We still have a way to go and I am counting on all of you to stay committed. While last year’s 25th anniversary celebration was amazing, we must remember the importance of continuing to support the cause. We have made many strides in the past, but we must never lose sight of the vision to
eradicate breast cancer and that cannot happen without funding the research and state-of-the-art equipment needed to find the cure,” said Denise R. Jordan, chair of the 26th annual Rays of Hope Walk & Run Toward the Cure of Breast Cancer.
This year’s Rays of Hope is once again putting a call out for walkers and runners, who have the power to bring hope to family, friends and neighbors fighting breast cancer and to help the world move further toward a future without breast cancer.
This year’s annual fundraiser will once again step off from Temple Beth El on Dickinson Street in Springfield and wind through and around Forest Park. The 10th Annual Run Toward the Cure 8K is coordinated and timed by Fleet Feet Sports. Once again this year, the Rays of Hope BIG WIG program offers special “big wig” status to those raising $1,000 or more online only by credit card. Rays of Hope BIG WIGS will have their own registration area at the event, as well as other perks depending on which level they achieve. Among the many BIG WIG perks will be a hat with a special pin, swag bag, access to premium restrooms, your own parking spot in the VIP lot, invitation onto the main stage, photo op with Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno and Rays of Hope founder Lucy Giuggio Carvalho, as well as free refreshments.
Register Right Now
Using the simple and convenient registration at baystatehealth.org/raysofhope, BIG WIG and other participants can create their
own personal webpage to assist them in their fundraising efforts. Participants must raise
at least $50 to receive the collectible Rays of Hope t-shirt.
Check-in for the run begins at 7:30 a.m. followed by step off at 8:30 a.m., while check-in for the walk begins at 9 a.m. followed by step off at 10:30 a.m. Buses begin operating at 7:30 a.m. for runners and at 8:30 a.m. for walkers to shuttle them to Temple Beth El. Parking for runners is only at the Lenox (formerly American Saw) lot in East Longmeadow at 301 Chestnut St. Parking information for walkers can be found at baystatehealth.org/raysofhope.
If you want to support the Rays of Hope, but are unable to due to other commitments, you can sign up as a “virtual” participant. You can choose your own method of participation – walk, run, bowl, swim and more – anytime during the month of October to get in five miles, while raising donations similar to other Rays of Hope participants.
“Now is the time to get your teams together, collect donations, coordinate your attire for the day, put on your comfortable shoes, and I’ll see you all on Oct. 27,” Jordan said.
This year’s Rays of Hope major sponsors include Baystate Breast & Wellness Center, Baystate Breast Specialists, Radiology & Imaging, Inc., Chicopee Savings Charitable Foundation, Compass One, Kinsley Power Systems, Westfield Bank, USA Waste & Recycling Inc., Hologic, The San Diego Foundation, and Zasco Productions. A listing of all sponsors can be found on the Rays of Hope website. Also, all Baystate Health Foundation events are underwritten by Health New England.
Learn more about this year's Rays of Hope Walk and 8K Run, held rain or shine: call 413-794-8001 or visit the Rays of Hope website.