Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Webster County Relay for Life struggles to get participants

J-E News Editor
With only two months until Relay for Life, the Webster County group that holds the local event has found itself struggling to get involvement from the community. Typically by this time there are 10 to 12 teams signed up. As of press time, only five teams have signed up to take part in this year’s event.
For many people around the country, Relay for Life is not only a way for them to fight back against cancer by raising money, it is a means of coping with the struggles, suffering and loss associated with the disease. It is also a way to celebrate life.

Every year cancer survivors from around the county share their stories with the Journal-Enterprise and our readers, and most of those stories tie into the annual Relay for Life event held at Trojan Field in June.
The last two years, however, have been hard on the event. The 2012 Relay saw extremely cold temperatures for that time of year, and the 2013 event was eventually forced indoors by rain. Webster County Relay for Life also has traditionally been held the same night as the Hopkins County event, which has taken away some participants, and others have complained that they could not attend because they had to go to work on Saturday morning.
In an attempt to make things easier, this year the decision was made to move the event from it’s traditional Friday night spot to the following night. 
“I do not think moving relay has caused a drop in teams signing up,” said Webster County Relay Co-Chair Cindy Elder. She added that many people have said they simply didn’t have the money to participate.
Traditionally  area schools have been big supporters of Relay for Life, but those numbers are down this year as well. Elder said one school told her that they couldn’t participate because they were having to do fund raisers to make up for their own budget cuts.
But it’s not too late to get involved. Webster County Relay is still taking teams for the upcoming event.
“If someone wants to sign up or learn more they can get in touch with me at 270-871-8819 or email,” Elder said.