Granby residents Meghan Russell and Morgan King have raised more than $7,000 for breast cancer awareness and research through special contributions from Russell’s daughter Maddy and her friend Ani Cashman. The pair plans to raise more at a fundraiser at Tina’s Ice Cream today, Saturday, Oct. 6.
Today’s event at Tina’s – BFFs for Breast Cancer – is the result of the confluence of three commendable and charitable actions: Meghan Russell and King’s joint participation as Team Granby Girls in the Susan G. Komen 3 Day breast cancer awareness walk and fundraiser in Washington D.C.; Maddy Russell and Cashman’s creation and sale of hundreds upon hundreds of friendship bracelets to help raise money for the walk; and the annual events organized by Tina Shaw, owner of Tina’s Ice Cream and two-time breast cancer survivor, to benefit breast cancer awareness on or around her birthday.
“It’s a really good fit,” Shaw said. “The kids are into it and so inspired.”
Shaw stressed that awareness, advocacy and discussion are all important to fighting breast cancer. The more people talk about the disease, the more it stays in their minds and encourages them to both be aware of their own bodies and contribute to efforts to find a cure.
Visitors to Tina’s can purchase friendship bracelets made by Maddy Russell and Cashman, the primary and very successful fundraising tool for Team Granby Girls, as well as the BFF sundae, made with pink ice cream of the customer’s choice, a brownie and hot fudge. Proceeds from the bracelets and $1 from each sundae sold go to the team as they prepare to leave for the nation’s capitol in 9 days.
Meghan Russell was quick to give credit to her daughter Maddy and her friend and fellow Kelly Lane student Cashman for devising and executing the friendship bracelet concept.
“The girls have been our biggest contributors,” Russell said.
The classmates ran a lemonade stand in July and decided to do something positive by raising money for charity. Outside the Russell’s home in Granby on a hot summer day, the young pair raised $200 plus the cost of materials during their first effort.
With a booth set up in August at Geissler’s, the two students raised almost $500 and could barely keep up with the demand from visitors to that grocery store. They crafted the bracelets as visitors shopped and brought them inside when completed.
“[It speaks to] the goodness of people in our community,” Meghan Russell said. “People were reaching in for whatever they had [in their wallets].”
With additional sales to friends, family, acquaintances and other advocates in the local area and around the country, Russell and King exceeded their team goal of $5,000 to participate in Komen’s 3 Day, a non-competitive walk that covers 60 miles in three days.
Meghan Russell said that her and King’s inspiration for participating in the 3 Day was to do something for charity and challenge themselves. Both women have been affected by breast cancer – Russell lost both grandmothers to breast cancer and King had many family members suffer from the disease as well.
“This disease has hit so many people,” Russell said.
BFFs for Breast Cancer happens at Tina’s Ice Cream, 4 Park Place (on the Granby Green), Granby, today from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. If you can’t make the event, you can still contribute to Team Granby Girls before they head to Washington D.C. by following this link to donate to Morgan King and this link to donate to Meghan Russell.