Tom Simmins: Relay against cancer |

Tom Simmins: Relay against cancer

Dear fellow community members,

I wanted to reach out to each one of you to ask your support of a very important cause, the fight against cancer. We all probably know at least one person who is fighting, has fought and won or has lost the fight against cancer. My personal story is I lost my oldest brother at 47 years old to cancer and a few years after that, my mother. Needless to say, I want to fight this disease to the end.

I have been involved for several years in Relay for Life and feel it to be a very worthy cause. In 2008, our community raised more than $240,000 in the fight against cancer. We raised the most dollars per capita than any other town in the entire USA. Can you believe that? The sad news is, and certainly understandable with the economy, we have not hit $50,000 once since then. I want to get back to a point where our community is recognized for a stellar and gallant effort in raising funds to fight cancer. I have an idea to do just that.

I started thinking about this in sheer numbers and how to make a major impact in fundraising for 2014. Each of us are approached many times each year, whether personally or professionally, to donate to a worthy cause. I would like you to consider this cause and help us fight back and “Finish the Fight.” We have around 11,000 residents in Steamboat Springs and close to 26,000 in Routt County. My thought is this — what if only 1,000 of us donated a mere $100 to Relay for Life this year? I know you can do this simple math, but if not, that’s $100,000. What if 1,000 residents donated $200?

With strength in numbers, we can make a significant impact and difference. One question that is ever present is how much of each dollar actually goes toward helping someone with cancer? I am proud to say that 72 cents of every dollar goes to help people combat this disease or fight it, 21 cents goes toward fundraising and just 7 cents goes to overhead. The American Cancer Society is one of the best-run nonprofit organizations and has minimized its administrative overhead to get the funds to the people who need them most. Colorado raised approximately $3 million last year and received back $7.84 million in research grants. Now that’s a return on investment.

So how do you donate or get involved? It is quite simple, as you probably already know someone who is on a team who needs your donation. Therefore, I ask that you please go to the Relay for Life website at From the main page, you will see where you can donate to an individual, a team or an event, or you can choose to create or join a team.

The event will be held Friday and we are inviting the entire community to join us for this fun and worthwhile event. It starts at 6:30 p.m. at Steamboat Springs High School and goes through the night (because cancer never sleeps) and concludes at about 7:30 a.m. Saturday morning with a free breakfast.

Please join me in raising these needed funds to fight back against this killer, and once again, show that Steamboat Springs can “Finish the Fight.”

To volunteer, call one of the following committee members: Emily Hines at 970-761-2660, Mary Simmins at 970-846-9843 or Natalie Simmins at 970-846-9842.

Help us “Create More Birthdays.”

Tom Simmins

Steamboat Springs

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