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About Spotlighting Your Community with Tamika Smith

Tamika Smith is passionate and curious about the world. She grew up in Miami, Florida and Nassau, Bahamas and often wonders what motivates people to walk in their particular journeys in life.... Read more

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Relay for Life of Rockville Celebrates 18 Years

Stephanie Hubbard is the senior community manager for the American Cancer Society (ACS). She primarily works to assist with the planning and coordination of all local Relay For Life events in the southern region of the country. These events help to raise money for cancer survivors and remember those that have passed on.

Hubbard sat down with MyMCMedia’s Community Engagement Specialist Tamika Smith to talk about working with Relay For Life of Rockville, which held their first event in 1995, and what drives her efforts in the community.

Tamika Smith: You are getting ready to host your annual Relay for Life event in Rockville on June 1. What was the inspiration behind creating Relay For Life of Rockville?

Hubbard: Relay For Life of Rockville is an annual grass-roots event, planned by community volunteers, to honor local cancer survivors and remember those who have been lost to all types of cancer and fight back through awareness, fundraising and advocacy. Our inspiration truly comes from those who battle all types of cancer, every day, in our community.

Smith: What do you hear from families who come to support your cause?  How does it affect them?

Hubbard: Everyone is affected by cancer in one way or another, so the relay event is very personal to those who attend.  Some families have recently lost the person that they are relaying for.  Others are diverse teams of friends, colleagues, sororities/fraternities or places of worship who are coming together to remember and honor various people at various stages of their cancer journey.

Smith: Why do you think it’s important for organizations like yours to exist as an outlet for the families?

Hubbard: When a family loses a loved one to cancer, a person loses a dear friend, or a company loses a colleague, events like Relay For Life provide an opportunity to celebrate the life of the loved one, remember their impact on us and fight back against the disease. The ceremonies held at the relay event, such as our Luminaria Lighting Ceremony, provide times for reflection and many times a sense of closure.  It also allows us to make a difference in the fight against cancer by helping fund critical cancer research, personally participating in cancer research through ACS programs like the Cancer Prevention Study-3, and supporting members of our community.

Smith: Do you have any major projects coming up?

Hubbard: Relay For Life is the signature fundraising event of the American Cancer Society and is held in communities throughout the world.  As with all Relay For Life events, Relay For Life of Rockville is a year-round planning and fundraising endeavor which culminates in the annual relay event.    

Smith:How can others in the community help with your cause?

Hubbard: Relay For Life of Rockville is an event for the community and by the community.  If anyone would like to get involved with the planning of the 2014 event, we would welcome their involvement!  We have numerous volunteer opportunities with varying levels of commitment.  Please email our event chair, Nancy Coulter, at nancycoulter@verizon.net if you are interested or have questions.

We are currently $20,000 away from our community fundraising goal of $85,000.  Any donations to support our event would be greatly appreciated and can be made online at http://www.RockvilleRelay.org.


<h2>Additional Coverage:</h2>

Relay for Life of Rockville Celebrates 18 Years

Cancer feature photo

Everyone is affected by cancer in one way or another, so the Relay For Life of Rockville event is very personal to those who attend. Some families have recently lost the person that they are relaying for.

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Tamika Smith

About Tamika Smith

Tamika Smith is passionate and curious about the world. She often wonders what motivates people to walk in their particular journeys in life. A native of Miami, Florida Smith graduated from Howard University in 2007 and continues to give back through mentorship.

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