Earlier this winter I had the opportunity to connect with Matt Dexter, Founder and Executive Director of the Christine B Foundation, and learn more about the upcoming Eastern Trek for Cancer. I am proud that Wilcox Wellness & Fitness is a sponsor of the 2019 team in their 7-day, 300 mile trek from Portland, ME to New York, NY.
Since 2015 this event has raised more than $110,000 to help CBF build a community of support for those affected by cancer in Eastern Maine, with 100% of the funds raised going directly to support the CBF mission. Participants pledge to raise at least $2,500, and will make stops along to trek to connect personally with cancer patients and their families.
I was completely blown away by the level of commitment of those participating and wanted to learn more about what inspired them to get involved at such a large scale. Matt offered to introduce me to Kate, a Bowdoin student from Southwestern, Connecticut.
Kate is participating as a runner in the trek as well as Mission Coordinator. In addition to this SEVEN DAY event from Portland to NYC, Kate is also intimately involved in the planning and coordination that occurs before the trek itself. As mission coordinator Kate manages and confirms service events such as those at the Ronald McDonald Home of Springfield and the St. Francis Hospital Cancer Center, both of which she will visit during the trek, as well as reviewing and ranking the scholarship submissions for the 2019 Christine B Dexter Scholarship, another component of this amazing foundation and fund raiser.
When I asked Kate how she got involved she shared how she learned about the event on campus. Her mother had been diagnosed with multiple myeloma over the summer, and she saw the trek as a way for her to counteract cancer's devastating power. Seeing a loved one suffer from cancer fueled her desire to get involved in this way. While she finds the biological aspects of cancer to be out of her control she hopes that by raising money, volunteering, and connecting with people along the trek she'll have the ability to lighten the load, if even by a small amount, for people like her Mom.
To help the 2019 CBF Team in their 7-day, 300 mile trek we will be collecting supplies here at the gym.
One of the many aspects that attracted me to opening a Wilcox Wellness & Fitness is the commitment to give back to the community. Not only do I feel that this is an important responsibility as a local business owner, but I am also aware of the incredible health benefits that are associated with acts of giving. We focus a lot on how nutrition and exercise make us feel, and I find it so interesting to learn more about how other factors impact our overall feelings of wellbeing. It's amazing to me how these factors can have such a positive impact on our overall health and quality of life.
Studies indicate that the act of giving boosts one's health, happiness and wellbeing through the release of neurotransmitters in our brain. Interestingly, these neurotransmitters are connected with motivation, memory, learning, sleep, digestion and appetite.
Through acts of giving we can literally feel better, and this can ultimately influence our behavior and how we engage with those around us in such a positive way. As a result, one act of giving can create a ripple effect throughout our lives and the quality of the life that we live.
Acts of giving don't have to be enormous and huge consumers of time. Even the simplest acts of giving can make an incredible impact, and can influence those around you in a very real way.
Many times it's the cumulative effect of many people coming together, making smaller contributions through donations of money, goods or service. Even in situations where one person may be making a much bigger commitment to a cause, they rely upon these smaller, incremental acts of giving from others in order to bring together a larger impact for the cause.
These kinds of incremental contributions have helped to support Kate in her fund raising efforts.
When I asked Kate what was most daunting in her preparation for the trek she noted the fund raising requirement. Kate spread the word about her initiative on social media, sent hand-written letters to friends and family, and distributed donation containers at local businesses in her home town, and to date has raised over $4900 through the generous support of her donors.
The outpouring of support was overwhelming for Kate. Through this experience Kate has become acutely aware of the support and kindness of everyone from those closest to her to complete strangers. Through this experience Kate has learned that "no act of kindness is without worth".
The response that Kate experienced, and the ripple effect that can be felt across a community through the act of giving can be quite profound.
Furthermore, altruism is contagious. The act of giving doesn't start and stop with the act itself, but actually propels others to get on board and continue the ripple.
So, let's continue the ripple that Kate, Matt and the rest of the Christine B Foundation team has started in our community and beyond. Their commitment is absolutely inspiring, and I can tell you that I'm already feeling the contagiousness of their drive and passion. I hope you do too.
Please consider a small donation to help "Fuel the Trekkers" in their incredible journey from Portland to New York! Drop your donation in the box at the gym from June 10th -20th.
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Hi! My name is Allison Hopkins and I am the owner of Wilcox Wellness & Fitness in Brunswick, ME. I am excited to bring WILCOX to Brunswick and share in my passion for living a great life through health and fitness.