Let’s face it. Cancer sucks. But, luckily there are impassioned individuals, like the folks at Shades of Pink Foundation (SOPF), doing amazing work to alleviate the financial burden of a breast cancer diagnosis. SOPF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in southeast Michigan that works to provide financial assistance to local women diagnosed with breast cancer and their families. But, how do you give people a fun way to support individuals diagnosed with something like breast cancer?
On Saturday, April 29, SOPF will be holding its annual fundraiser, A Walk at the Detroit Zoo. Every year, SOPF and its plethora of volunteers come together at the Detroit Zoo in Royal Oak, many of them dressed head-to-toe in all manner of pink regalia, to take a walk through the Zoo and raise money for SOPF. Attendees come away with a sense of pride for having done something to help a community they hold dear.
This year sees the addition of the Walk at the Zoo’s youngest team. Known as “The Four Fighting Irish,” this group of 5th-grade students from Notre Dame Marist Academy developed a classroom exhibition project about cancer and raised more than $1,000 for the Walk.
While SOPF works year-round to alleviate the financial burden a breast cancer diagnosis can bring upon an individual and their family, A Walk at the Detroit Zoo is SOPF’s biggest fundraising event of the year. Last year, SOPF provided assistance to more than 150 breast cancer patients with more than $300,000 in grants. At this year’s event, of which Metro Detroit Chevy Dealers is once again a sponsor, SOPF has set a funding goal of $400,000.
Those looking to support the cause by attending A Walk at the Detroit Zoo can do so by registering as an individual or as a team on the SOPF website. On-site registration will also be available at 7 a.m. the day of the event. The opening ceremony kicks off at 8 a.m. at the giant tent with breakfast snacks, shopping, face painting, survivor stories and sponsor & team recognition. The walk itself will run from 8:30 a.m. until 12 p.m.
“The Zoo Walk means so many things to each participant. Some are there to celebrate their victory over breast cancer, others walk in support of someone currently battling through treatment and recovery,” said Shades of Pink Foundation executive director Jaye Sciullo. “It’s an incredible demonstration of support, and a celebration of life.”