Monthly Archives: October 2009

Portland Soccer Team Using Bracelets to Spread Message

This time, it is a college soccer team. The University of Portland has decided to help raise cancer awareness by giving out $1,000 yellow Livestrong wristbands to those who attend the Portland vs. Montana Soccer game. Here’s the story:
“The two teams have met once, in 1997, when the Pilots won 2-0. … The Grizzlies are averaging 0.89 goals and allowing 2.00 goals. Kaitlyn Heinsohn and Teresa Huemann lead Montana with two goals each. … Portland is holding opponents to a .046 shooting percentage. … Portland leads the West Coast Conference in scoring, averaging 3.00 goals. Three teams are tied for second at 1.55 goals. … Montana coach Neil Sedgwick said he was excited for his team to play in Portland. “It would be every player’s dream, in every kind of sport, to play on that stage Friday night in Portland,” he said in comments posted on “There will be a huge Portland crowd, and it will be an exciting time for our (team).” …
As part of Portland’s joining with the Lance Armstrong LiveStrong foundation, the first 1,000 spectators will receive a free LiveStrong wristband. Spectators can honor those stricken with cancer by writing their name on yellow links, which will be available at the main entrance. The links will be chained and displayed on the field at halftime. During pregame introductions, the university will recognize 11 cancer survivors with the Pilots’ starting lineup” (
Has your college or university done anything like this support a campaign like cancer awareness?

Kids Sell Silicone Wristbands to Help Ten Year Old With Cacner

A ten year old girl named Katie was diagnosed with cancer. A family in San Juan Capistrano heard about it and although they never met Katie they decided to do something to help her. They made a lemonade stand and raised lots of money for her. The lemonade stand was shut down, but aren’t going to give up. Some other kids are selling Silicone Wristbandsto help. Here’s what happened:

“They have received a “constant flow,” said Petra Lowery, the children’s mother who is equally invested in the cause, “We keep her family in our prayers, and would like to thank everyone for their support.” But in their two weeks selling lemonade, they have been forced to stop by the San Juan Hills Estates homeowners association, which complained of potential traffic buildup and danger for the children who may be tempted to cross the street. However the Lowery family will not be deterred and plans to find a location as soon as possible.

Team members of Hawley’s have been raising money in other cities such as San Clemente, Dana Point, and Aliso Niguel, hosting car washes, bake sales, and more lemonade stands. Overall, about $3,500, give or take, has been raised by SoCal Blues, their soccer club. They will now be selling bracelets akin to “Live Strong” bands featuring, “Katie #3,” her name and soccer number, for $5 to support her. Petra Lowery expressed her gratitude saying that they, “would like to be thankful to everybody,” for their support and donations.”


RadioShack Supports Livestrong Day

A few weeks ago, the Lance Armstrong Foundation celebrated Livestrong Day. In many ways, this is a promotional event used to further raise awareness and funding for cancer research. RadioShack joined up with the foundation to sell Livestrong wristbands in order raise money:
“RadioShack Corporation (NYSE: RSH) will join seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong and LIVESTRONG (the Lance Armstrong Foundation) by participating for the first time in its global grassroots action day on Oct. 2. RadioShack plans to activate almost 6,000 store locations to help raise awareness and contributions through the communities it serves nationwide. RadioShack announced earlier this year its official sponsorship of Armstrong and Team RadioShack to compete in cycling and other events worldwide, including the 2010 Tour de France.
LIVESTRONG Day is the Foundation’s one-day initiative to raise cancer awareness and unite people affected by cancer. Oct. 2 marks the anniversary of Armstrong’s cancer diagnosis in 1996. Before he knew whether he would survive, Armstrong started the foundation to fight cancer and help others affected by the disease. In honor of Armstrong and cancer survivors everywhere, the Foundation set a goal to host a record-breaking number of LIVESTRONG Day events to put cancer at the top of the global agenda and make it impossible to ignore. With more than 1,000 events taking place in every American state and across all continents on LIVESTRONG Day, individuals and communities will act locally and stand in solidarity with 28 million cancer survivors worldwide” (
Companies that support causes like this have my vote. I’m wondering now how many other large organizations have teamed up with cancer-awareness campaigns.

Rubber Wristbands, Pink Ribbons: All about Awareness

Perhaps the yellow silicone wristband and the pink ribbon seem all to familiar icons for cancer awareness. But that’s the point. According to marketing experts, getting the message out needs some kind of icon or logo. I thought this article was very interesting:
“Promotional products have long played a vital role in increasing awareness and support for a variety of cause-related initiatives. From the ubiquitous breast cancer ribbon to the yellow LIVESTRONG bracelets, promotional products are key to carrying the message of these causes to the masses, according to Promotional Products Association International (PPAI).

This is more evident than ever with the variety of pink products that help mark the beginning of National Breast Cancer Awareness month each year. For more than 20 years, October has been dedicated to increasing awareness, celebrating survivors and remembering those who lost their battle with cancer. First introduced as a grassroots call to action in the 1990s, the program has since gained traction, visibility and support through the tangible and visible effects of pink products, which have also been key in funding research. The type of products supporting this cause range from simple pink ribbons to athletic apparel and water bottles and have become globally recognized symbols for the ongoing fight against breast cancer” (
Can you think of any other promotional item, besides the wristband and the ribbon, that have promoted awareness over the years?

Another Life Claimed by Cancer

Jeff Wenstrom the head football coach at Winter Springs High School died on September 7, 2009. He suffered from esophageal cancer. Yellow Livestrong Wristbands will be sold in his honor to help his family. Here’s more about him:

“The 45-year-old coach had coached high school in Central Florida for over 20 years. He was entering his second season with the Winter Springs Bears.

Wenstrom had previously served as defensive coordinator at Ocoee High School and Lyman High School.

He was the head football coach at Oak Ridge High School and served as a varsity line coach at Seminole and Jones high schools.

Matt Hesselbart was named interim head coach for the Bears before the team’s first game Friday against Winter Park.

Jones told Bright House Sports Network the team will sell “Livestrong” arm bands to support Wenstrom’s family.”


Livestrong Bracelet Helps Man Win Race

Kevin Kremke wore a Livestrong Wristbands during a bike race, in memory of his mom who died from cancer. He started to fall behind toward the end but when he looked down at his wrist and saw his mom’s bracelet, he sped up and won the race. This is a great story:

“Kevin Kremke is no stranger to the stars-and-stripes jersey awarded to national cycling champions. The Reliant Energy executive, long one of Houston’s premier racers, had already captured two of them before he arrived in Colorado Springs last weekend hoping to defend his U.S. men’s 35-39 age-group track points race championship.

But this competition was going to be different for a couple reasons. Kremke would be at altitude, which is never a fun thing for us flatlanders, though he had a very special motivation. He sought the victory to dedicate to his mother, who passed away in February after a long battle with cancer. So Kremke set off around the 7-Eleven Velodrome oval with her yellow Livestrong bracelet and her serenity prayer bracelet on his wrist.

As expected, the thin air took a fearsome toll, but he rode intelligently, accumulating points where he could while establishing his superiority. With 20 of the 72 laps remaining, just Jason Meidhof of Bethesda, Md., remained a threat. Although Kremke held a five-point advantage, track racing awards a 20-point bonus for anyone who laps the field, so Meidhof found another gear and set out to bridge the gap.

“It was the only way he could win,” Kremke said. “I was in a dangerous situation. I had to stay with him or risk losing the race.”

There was a small problem, though.

“I was absolutely dying at that point,” Kremke admitted.

And, with two laps left, Meidhof caught the field, securing his 20 points.

“I was dangling about 15 meters back … so, so close,” Kremke said. “But I dug deeper than I ever have and caught the field myself with half a lap to go. I looked at those bracelets on my wrist when I crossed the finish line and was reminded what real strength, and real pain, really was.”


Livestrong Fundraiser Helps Further the Cause

The Lance Armstrong Foundation (made most popular by its yellow rubber wristbands ) is still going strong. While this article below is a few weeks old, I thought it was interesting to see how local chapters of the Livestrong Army are still spreading the word about cancer awareness.
“The local Livestrong Army will host a fundraiser at the Starline in the Tower District tonight.
Army Captain Michelle Maroot Diebert says the event will also be a celebration following Thursday’s proclamation issued by Mayor Ashley Swearengin and city leaders making October 2nd “Livestrong Day” in Fresno.
The proclamation commemorates world-renowed cyclist Lance Armstrong’s heroic battle against cancer following his diagnosis on October 2nd, 1996. Local musicians have donated their time and talents for tonight’s event. The lineup includes: D.B. and the Struggles, Roger Perry, The Mo Fo Party Band, and Patrick Contreras.
There will also be a raffle and silent auction with a $10 donation at the door. The event will be held from 8 p.m. to midnight at the Starline at 831 E. Fern. All proceeds will benefit the Lance Armstrong Foundation to continues its cancer research efforts.
The foundation has raised $250 million and counting” (

The Virtual Livestrong Bracelet

In an effort to raise continued awareness for cancer research and the Lance Armstrong foundation, a new idea has been proposed to “wear” your Livestrong wristband virtually. That’s right, wear it online. Here’s what is being suggested:
“Yellow is the color we’ve all come to associate with the LIVESTRONG movement and the fight against cancer, so there’s really no better way to make a big visual impact and celebrate LIVESTRONG Day than to wear yellow in a virtual capacity.
We’re thinking simple things like changing the background of your blog or website to yellow for the day, creating a yellow-themed and sharing it across the web, updating your Twitter avatar with a official LIVESTRONG wristband or one of several unofficial Twibbons, or changing your Facebook photo.
It’s an opportunity to get creative with the color yellow, all the while making a distinct impression on your entire online network, and showing support for the LIVESTRONG cause. Of course you can always wear yellow in real life too” (
After seeing these ideas, I bet there are dozens more ideas we could use to wear our wristbands online. Any creative ideas?

Expressing Charity Through Clothing Choices

I found a neat article that talked about how a fad started with the yellow Livestrong Wristbands to express support for certain charities, and it has now spread to other types of clothing. Even shoes. There is a company that donates a pair of shoes to someone in need for every pair of shoes sold. Here’s the story:

” Fashion has always been an outlet for self-expression. Now philanthropically designed clothing will allow students to express themselves while helping the greater good.
Students show their support on campus for philanthropic campaigns by adorning themselves in brands like TOMS and Product (Red) and raising breast cancer awareness.

Amy Strother, owner of Noelie Harmon, an eco-friendly and socially responsible boutique at 7580 Corporate Blvd., said apparel and other products centered around causes popped up everywhere during the last two years.

“It’s smart business,” Strother said. “It has gotten to where your product has to represent something. Consumers see it as a cool product.”

According to TOMS’ Web site, the company’s mission is to give one pair of shoes to a person in need for every pair of shoes purchased. The company has done shoe drops in Argentina, Ethiopia and other poverty-stricken countries.

TOMS canvas shoes come in an array of patterns. They range from a plain cream-colored design and a splattered-paint design to sequin-covered design, fitting almost anyone’s personal style.

“It’s incredible knowing that a simple article of clothing that we take for granted is something that others don’t have access to, and by purchasing these shoes, they, in turn, get a pair as well,” Horner said. “It’s an incredible thing that I may not have been able to accomplish otherwise.”

Jessica Pattison, textiles, apparel and merchandise instructor, said companies use color associations to create identity. Yellow is associated with Livestrong and cancer awareness, while red and pink are associated with AIDS and breast cancer, respectively. This makes it easier for consumers to choose products that support the cause they personally support, she said.

The onset of this philanthropic fashion movement was the Lance Armstrong Livestrong bracelets in 2004. Armstrong’s athleticism and fame epitomized the Livestrong bracelets, Pattison said.

“People want a sense of acceptance and identification, and helping a cause is a way to do that now,” Pattison said. “It’s gotten to where if you don’t support some cause, you’re almost ostracized and considered someone of little empathy.”


Blame Drew’s Cancer

Got problems and looking for something to blame? Drew Olanoff wants you to blame his cancer. Go ahead it’s for a good cause. Drew has started a Twitter hashtag where people can go and blame things on his cancer. For example one might say,”I blame Drew’s cancer for making me late on my rent payments.” He is using this hashtag to raise money for LiveStrong, a company who sold Silicone Wristbands to raise money for cancer research. Check out this article:

” Olanoff was diagnosed on May 20 with stage three Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. He recognized that his type of cancer has a high cure rate but having watched loved ones battle cancer, he wanted to create more awareness. He also wanted to try and diminish the fear among people he’d met that seemed to steer away from talking about cancer or even visiting their doctors.

“The fear is completely understandable, and I think a lot of people don’t know what to say,” Olanoff said. “I would rather have them be alert and aware, and for all of the things we share online this is a case of how sharing something that can help. I’m used to sharing what I have for dinner. Why not this?”

Olanoff launched #blamedrewscancer, which began as a Twitter hashtag for people to blame, well, anything on his cancer. He’s been quoted saying that he starting blaming his cancer for mundane things — even losing his keys — and then encouraged others to do the same. He turned the #blamedrewscancer into a fundraiserfor Livestrong (Lance Armstrong Foundation) — his official partner in #blamedrewscancer. While he’s raised several thousand dollars in word-of-mouth-driven dontaions, he’s currently also trying to find corporate sponsors to pay $1 per person who uses the #blamedrewscancer hashtag — a total so far of about $11K for any companies ready to make the donation.”