When I was 8 years old, my mother was diagnosed with Stage 2 Breast Cancer. My family was shocked and scared, but luckily, she had a surgery performed that removed the diseased cells, and since then she has had no further problems. However, for many other families in the United States with a similar story, they don’t always have a happy ending.
When our school was first formed in 2009, the Leadership team at Chiawana wanted to help contribute to the cure of this disease that has hurt so many families, and give others hope for that possibility. So, in 2010 we decided to join in full force with National Pink Week. Every year we decorate the entire student cafeteria in full pink, have our DECA club make and sell Pink Week shirts, and fundraise at all the athletic events that week. On top of that, we have silent auctions, where we also donate all the profits. On the Friday of our big Pink Week game, we put on an assembly for the student body in order to raise awareness, and we invite a few survivors to come speak. Then, that night at the game, both the football players and the student section are completely decked out in pink. It honestly really looks amazing, and gets the entire community involved.
But this past year, a well-known English teacher named Mr. Clayton contacted the Leadership team and said he had a deal for us. If we beat our all-time donation record of $3,500, he would shave his head in front of the school at the assembly. Needless to say, we were stoked for the opportunity. Once we made the announcement, two other teachers even joined the deal as well. Looking around the room at our excited faces, we decided this needed to happen, somehow, someway. So we added more competition-based fundraisers. At lunch, we had donation jars set out, with the faces of ten different teachers on it. Students could vote by putting money in a jar. Whatever teacher had the most votes by the time of the assembly, had volunteered to get pie’d in the face in front of the entire student body. The teachers became really competitive as well, telling their students they would have to write an essay if they didn’t win the vote. And a local restaurant let us conduct a “take-over” for two nights, donating all the profits we made. The cool thing was that all of the competition was in good taste, and more importantly it was for a great cause.
During halftime that Friday night, our ASB President and Vice President walked a giant check to the middle of the field, where the other school met us and took pictures. All in all, we had raised $4,281, destroying our previous record, and getting several teachers' heads shaved in the process. Seeing our community rally around our school in order to be able to make this donation to the Tri-Cities Cancer Center reminded all of us why we joined the Leadership team, to make our community, and this world, a better place.