Celebrate.Remember.Fight Back.

The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is a life-changing event that gives everyone in communities across the globe a chance to Celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, Remember loved ones lost, and Fight Back against the disease.

Each year, more than 4 million people in over 20 countries take part in this global phenomenon and raise much-needed funds and awareness to save lives from cancer. Relay For Life, started back in 1985 when Dr Gordy Klatt, an intestinal surgeon, ran around a track to collect money for the American Cancer Society. Relay For Life teams camp out overnight and take turns walking or running around a track. Events are up to 24 hours long, and because cancer never sleeps, each team is asked to have at least one participant on the track at all times.

Relay for life75 Survivors, 406 participants and 26 teams participated to the Relay for Life «Evere 2013»  . Participants raised 48.067,00 euro for the fight against cancer. Led by Xavier Van Waes, a team of 15 Exclusiv staff members took turns running or walking around the track for the benefit of cancer patients.

“My sister had cancer. By participating to this event I feel closer to her. This is my first time at a Relay for Life event but I will definitely participate again. The solidarity that we feel today, creates a special atmosphere,” Deborah Tastenoe, Exclusiv team, told The Baltic Review. Most of those present had a story of grief and loss, but ultimately also of strength and humanity to share.

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Relay for Life © Bibbi Abruzzini

Many moments create the unique Relay experience. The Luminaria Ceremony takes place after dark; participants take time to remember people who have lost their lives to cancer, honor people who have fought cancer in the past, and support those whose fight continues. Candles are lit inside of personalized bags and are placed around the Relay track.

Relay For Life’s objective is to raise funds for the fight against cancer. These funds are remitted in full to the Foundation against Cancer, whose mission is to support scientific research financially, spread awareness and education and provide social care to people affected by cancer, along with their families.

 This article is dedicated to all those who have lost their battle with cancer.

Bibbi Abruzzini
Bibbi Abruzzini is a foreign correspondent for the BALTIC REVIEW and international news agencies in South Asia. She is Italian, grew up in Brussels and has reported from several countries, including Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Colombia, Croatia, France, India, Italy, Lebanon, Nepal, Tunisia,Turkey and the US – writing largely about social and development issues.