April is Cancer Awareness Month, and for UMHB that means to give back and show that the university cares about finding a cure for cancer.
This past Saturday, students and staff of UMHB organized a 5K run called Cru For a Cause in honor of the month and to support those who have been affected by this disease.
Sophomore nursing major Mandi Watts was one who participated in the event and said she accomplished something for people with cancer or who have had it.
“It was a great feeling knowing that I was, even in a small way, helping someone who has cancer in their life,” she said. “At first I was nervous about running it because a 5K seems so far, but I ran a little, walked a little and so on with my friend.”
The race started in front of the Mayborn Campus Center and was open for anyone who wanted to run.
Some ran the race for other reasons than just to honor someone affected by cancer.
Junior accounting major Bob Beckworth ran the race to support study of the disease.
“I ran more for support of cancer research,” he said. “This is a great way for UMHB to reach beyond just the community but into the research that will affect all of those who have been afflicted by cancer.”
The event was sponsored by the university’s housing staff.
“We want to honor people who have battled cancer or are currently battling cancer,” said organizer and resident director Christan Hammonds.
This wasn’t just an event for students or adults. There was a Kid K for children right after the 5K. Some other things planned for little kids were face painting booths, a bouncy house and a special art project station.
Watts was impressed with the turnout.
“There were a lot more people than I thought,” she said. “That’s just proof to me that nearly everyone has been affected by cancer in some way and in return that everyone wants to put an end to all forms of the disease. I am so proud to go to a school that would want to help put an end to cancer and honor those who have it or have had it.”
For Hammonds, the race was about all who have been afflicted by cancer.
“We have had people within our own UMHB family who have fought cancer, both faculty and students, so this is important to us. This disease impacts everyone,” she said.
Racers could name someone they wanted to honor.
With the shirts they were given, they could write the name of a loved one and race for him or her.
All of the proceeds raised on Saturday by the Cru For a Cause race were donated to Scott & White Cancer Center for patients and further research.
Watts wants to encourage everyone to help fight against cancer.
“This was such an amazing experience because I know that I was doing something good, even though it was something so small,” she said. “Anything to help cancer go away, no matter how big or small is beneficial.
“No one should have to go through this disease,” Watts said. “We have to stop it, and UMHB is helping it end.”