Both breast cancer and ovarian cancer have affected us all, and SKICKS has been working with some amazing organizations to fuel the fight in finding a cure, and to support those impacted. SKICKS has teamed up with The Comfort Project 360, The Pink Zone at Penn State University, and Bulldogs Battling Breast Cancer. The creation of the Pink Sneaker and the Teal Sneaker have given SKICKS the ability to donate a percentage of sales to these organizations in order to raise and donate money to help find a cure.
The Comfort Project 360 was launched to create the most comprehensive, supportive, and therapeutic environment in which cancer patients are treated. Research shows that a patient's environment positively impacts the healing process, so this organization has gone above and beyond to make treatment an optimistic and comforting experience for their patients. Creators, Hyla Weiss and Suzanne Unger, have worked to transform treatment experience at Saint Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, NJ. These changes include transforming the patient waiting, infusion, and exams rooms to a more positive environment. They also provide healthy snacks and plush new blankets, robes and gowns for patient use.
Mindy Roth, an 8 year cancer survivor, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008, which has now spread to her bones and lungs. Mindy gets treated at Saint Barnabas every Tuesday and says that the Comfort Project creates positive changes affecting the body, mind and spirit for the patients who endure the challenges of chemotherapy, radiation and infusions everyday. Mindy told the SKICKS team, “I am a full supporter of anything PINK. I believe in PINK! I believe PINK helps me with my healing process and I am proud to have breast cancer and have never had a regret one day. I proudly wear my pink and white SKICKS to show my support and make everyone aware of who I am and what I believe in.”
SKICKS has recently been able to donate $3,000 to the Comfort Project, and will continue to donate a percentage of pink sneaker sales to the organization.
A Penn State tradition, started by Lady Lions coach Rene Portland, was born in 2007 with the Think Pink basketball game. Dressed in pink uniforms, the team turned a routine basketball game into something with much more meaning and were able to raise $20,000 to support breast cancer research. Not long after Penn State’s successful Think Pink game, Kay Yow, a popular women’s coach at North Carolina State, was making her courtside return after battling breast cancer. The Women’s Basketball Coaches Association developed a new logo and catchphrase for the cause: the WBCA Pink Zone. Sadly, Kay Yow lost her battle with the disease in 2009, but her legacy remains in the Pink Zone games that span the nation. The Pennsylvania Pink Zone works to empowers survivors by raising money to help fund breast cancer education, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
SKICKS proudly donated $6,900 to the Pink Zone!
The SKICKS team spoke with Miriam Powell, who works within The Pink Zone, and she told us that what makes The Pink Zone so unique is the fact that though they are the leading donors to the Kay Yow Cancer Fund, they also donate to a handful of other organizations. The Pink Zone is able to raise monumental funds that are then donated locally to hospitals and medical centers within their community, or regionally within the state. Their donations go to Mount Nittany Medical Center, Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute, PA Breast Cancer Coalition, J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital, and Geisinger-Lewistown Hospital.
Pictured above is a group of breast cancer survivors on the court at halftime during the Think Pink Game.
Bulldogs Battling Breast Cancer was founded by Jay and Teresa Abbott. Teresa was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer, and after an 18 month fight, she was pronounced cancer free in 2003. The Abbott family decided that they wanted to do something to help fight this disease and give back. During this time, their youngest son, Chris was playing football at the University of Georgia, and with the help of UGA Football Coach Mark Richt and the UGA Football Team, the 1st Annual Bulldogs Battling Breast Cancer Charity Golf Tournament was organized and Bulldogs Battling Breast Cancer was born. They now hold a 2nd golf tournament as well, in it's 2nd year- the BBBC Summer Golf Classic at Currahee Club.
Since being founded in 2004, BBBC has raised over $325K (including $200K in the last 3 years) for the fight against breast cancer. They focus on early detection and every dollar raised is donated locally in Athens Ga to St. Mary's Hospital.
The SKICKS team got a chance to talk to Dwight Standridge, who has been involved with BBBC since 2005. Dwight helped expand fundraising through other events, such as several functions each year at local breweries around North GA, and their popular Protect The "Puppies" t shirts. BBBC does a new shirt design each year and in the last 4 years, they have sold over 15,000 of them.
Dwight told us that he saw an ad for SKICKS last spring and got in touch with the team to see if he could get few pairs of the UGA shoes as raffle items for their golf tournament. “Next thing I know,” Dwight said, “I am on a conference call letting them know about our charity. Then I found out about the breast cancer awareness shoes! Lisa sent us some samples and we displayed a SKICKS table at all our events last year. At the end of the year, SKICKS generously sent BBBC a $1,500 donation for our cause! We now have representation on campus at UGA through the Student Branch, a student organization focused on breast cancer awareness.”
SKICKS is proud to help the fight against cancer to make a difference, and to be able to work with such awesome organizations. Check them out here:
The SKICKS team hopes to make more colored sneakers in future. It’s our goal to support other groups going forward!