By Lynne Garner, Cancer Research UK
Relay For Life® of Cambridge, United Kingdom is a first year event and to have a Global Hero of Hope on-site...what an opportunity!
I first met Amanda Power, a volunteer and a Global Hero of Hope from the Cancer Council Queensland in Australia, in Nashville during my American Cancer Society Nationwide Relay For Life® Leadership Summit experience in 2012. The feeling that I had of walking into that huge auditorum full of almost 1,000 likeminded "Relay Bonkers" people had immeidately immersed me into the most amazing family party! It's truly an experience that will live with me forever, knowing that I am not alone in this fight, that there are millions around the globe Relaying to find a cure!
When Amanda said she wanted to travel to the United Kingdom to participate in Relay, I was absolutely amazed! Walking around the track with Amanda over the weekend and listening to her speak from the heart, created a roller coaster ride of emotions for all involved!
She reached out to new Relayers and shared their passion, while sharing her story of survivorship with the newly diagnosed to demonstrate the power of hope! Amanada has such great presence and we felt incredibly honored to have her on our turf. Amanda fell in love with the United Kingdom and Relay For Life® of Cambridge. In her words, "they just get it" and have such strong foundations on which to grow and develop!
For me, being part of the global fight is what it is all about. Relay breaks down barriers, no matter where we are, the color of our skin, the language we speak - cancer is the same the world over and cancer-fighting Heroes are everywhere! To be part of this movement completes me. I know that one day cancer will be beaten. I know that all over the world, Relay has joined us with this bond of friendship, love, and determination.
Through Relay we learn and grow, not only as staff members and volunteers, but as individuals. Cancer can not break us, it simply strengthens us. As Amanda put it, "We are One Team, One Family, One Army, and One Hope! Look Cancer, we are coming to get you..and we're coming in 20 different (Relay Country) directions!"