February 17, 2017, GLENWOOD SPRINGS, COLO — When students at Coal Ridge High School wanted to raise money to battle breast cancer they decided to support an organization close to home, the Calaway Young Cancer Center at Valley View.
“We wanted to impact our community,” said Senior Class President, Natalie Dougherty. The student body raised nearly $500 to support integrated services for cancer patients in the Roaring Fork Valley.
The project was the brainchild of Sophomore Class President, Stephen Jones, who joined forces with his fellow student council members and their faculty advisor, Joe Luebbe, to plan a week of fundraising events.
As part of Winterfest Spirit Week at Coal Ridge, students sold baked goods, held a pancake breakfast and sponsored a beanbag toss. “We sold a toss for a dollar,” explained Dougherty. “The one who came closest to hitting the X on the floor won a prize.”
Ann Wilcox, the executive director of Calaway Young Cancer Center at Valley View, was invited to speak about cancer at the school’s Winterfest Pep Rally. “When I asked who, among the students, had been touched by cancer, more than half the group raised their hands,” she said. “It was so inspiring to see young people bring these funds home to help serve our community with cancer.”
On Valentine’s Day, Leubbe, along with Dougherty, Jones, and Jaelyn Price, VP of the sophomore class, delivered a check for $491.15 to Wilcox and Valley View CEO, Gary Brewer.
“The money will help integrated therapies at Valley View do a lot of good for our patients,” said Wilcox. “Data shows that being touched improves care and helps patients heal.”
The integrated therapies team at Valley View provides therapeutic touch, massage, acupuncture, and other supportive healing modalities as a gift from the community, completely funded by generous giving.
“The whole student body wanted to do something about cancer,” said Jones, “and this was a way to show our support.”
“It was a student effort,” Luebbe said, “I didn’t do much to organize any of this; they took it on.”