Think Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month!
Go Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month! A few years ago, you might have walked into Walmart or Target during October and found the expected display of Halloween items and an abundance of other items in the traditional orange and black holiday colors. Today, however, another color is taking over store shelves – pink! October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and everyone is going pink. Even the jack ‘o lantern is changing his color. I guess pink has become the new orange. Of course, if you have a Zeta Tau Alpha chapter on your college campus, you probably know this already. The ZTAs participate in a number of breast cancer awareness events each year, including passing out pink ribbons at NFL games (5 million to date!) during October and helping to put on several Race for the Cure® events across the country. They even trademarked the phrase ‘Think Pink!’ Together, they have raised a ton of money for breast cancer charities, including the American Cancer Society, Susan G. Komen for the Cure and The Donna Foundation. If you or your friends would like to help raise awareness on your campus or in your community, you don’t have to join your local ZTA chapter; all you need is a few motivated students and a little creativity. To help you turn your campus pink, I’ve put together a list of activities that are fun and easy to organize.
1. Drink Pink
A great way to raise awareness is to host a pink lemonade stand. Get permission from your college to put up a table in a high-traffic area on campus around lunch time or host the stand at one of the upcoming athletic games. Once you have approval, select a local charity as the recipient of any money you receive during the event and put out a tip jar on your table. You can often get local grocery stores to donate the lemonade mix, cups and ice, especially if you inform them that all proceeds are going to charity.
2. Bake Sale
Students love to eat, so this is a no-brainer. Get together a group of your friends and bake up some cookies, cake pops, brownies, and more! If you need a little inspiration, just head over to Pinterest; there are plenty of recipes for turning just about anything pink. Hand out the goodies for fun or ask for a small donation to help a local charity. It’s completely up to you.
Creating homemade breast cancer ribbons is super easy. You just need some glue, small safety pins, and pink ribbon. Gather your friends for a ribbon pinning party, and in a few hours, you’ll have hundreds to pass out on campus. If you want to collect money for a local charity, consider asking for a small donation in exchange for the ribbon, and don’t forget to ask the local craft store if they will donate the supplies.
4. Charity Event
Many people have been touched by breast cancer, including students and professors. If you know of someone on your campus who is currently undergoing treatment, or recently lost someone to breast cancer, consider organizing a charity event to help with expenses. In the past, I have held a softball game (students vs. professors), a bowling tournament, and a dance-a-thon. It’s a great way to not only raise awareness, but also to help someone who might need a hand.
October is filled with a ton of charitable events that need volunteers. If you don’t have the time or motivation to create your own awareness campaign, consider contacting one of your local nonprofits or civic groups to see how you can help. Volunteer activities at local races often include hosting a water table, checking in participants, decorating or cleaning up after the event. Many organizations also need help hosting tables at various health fairs and other awareness events. Don’t forget to track your hours; you never know when they might lead to a college scholarship!
It’s a good idea to reach out to your local breast cancer organization to let them know what you have planned. Many will provide you with free educational materials, ribbons and other items to pass out on campus or at your event. Don’t forget to include the guys in your activities, too. Breast cancer does not discriminate; it can affect men and women of any age and any color. Remember, it only takes one person to make a difference, and that person could be you!