High school students from Forestville and Fredonia are taking a stand against cancer.
The Forestville girls' volleyball team and the Fredonia girls' soccer team both donated money to the Circle of Love. To honor them, Circle of Love Founder Josie Christopher hosted an ice cream social to show her appreciation.
The Forestville team donated a total of $1,000 to the Circle of Love. The team participated in Strike Out Cancer in October to raise money. During this game, girls wore pink jerseys.
OBSERVER Photo by Samantha McDonnell
The Forestville Volleyball and Fredonia Soccer teams were rewarded with an ice cream social for donating a combined total of more than $1,700 to the Circle of Love.
According to JV volleyball coach Dennis Wakelee, the team played in the game against Silver Creek where the players got sponsors.
"(The girls) raise money through friend and families and area businesses," Wakelee said.
The girls raffled off gift baskets to raise money as part of the game and besides the Circle of Love, the girls donated to the Susan B. Komen for the Cure, the R.O. Foundation and the Olivia Coia scholarship fund. The Fredonia team wanted to raise money after one of its coaches was diagnosed with breast cancer. The girls thought it was important to make a statement and give back to the community. The girls raised more than $700 for the Circle of Love through a T-shirt sale, 50/50 raffle and Pink The Field - a game held in October during which the girls wore pink jerseys.
As part of the afternoon, Lois VanDette of Sheridan addressed the students and family members to tell her story of survival from breast cancer. She described her journey as, "A lot to go through."
VanDette had found her first lump while laying down and she would have never felt it if she had been standing up, she said. VanDette also gave the students advice for when they get older: do self-examinations for cancer at all angles.
She also described how breast cancer, once cured can come back as bone, liver, lungs or brain cancer but she never thought it would come back as skin cancer.
"No one told me it could come back on your skin," she said.
VanDette found the skin cancer by finding two small lumps on her chest as small as bird seed. She called her doctor and was told to come in to the office right away.
Christopher applauded VanDette for her courage throughout her battles with cancer.
"She has done a beautiful job overcoming," Christopher said.
Also speaking was Rich Goodman of Spokefolk. Goodman spoke to the students about one of his favorite topics, volunteerism.
"I'm in awe of the courage represented in this garden," he said.
Goodman told the girls that while volunteering may not pay, have long hours and the students may not necessarily enjoy the work at times, their volunteerism will pay off. Goodman also spoke of the satisfaction he received while volunteering.
"It gave me a sense of satisfaction and sense of purpose ... the satisfaction you get when you're giving something of yourself," he said.
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