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UNG Community Runs with a Purpose

Relay for Life Team Hosts 2024 Heroes Against Cancer Comic Run
Gavin Beck

The University of North Georgia Relay for Life team hosted the Heroes Against Cancer 5k race and 1 mile Fun Run on March 2 at the Gainesville campus to raise money for the 2024 Relay for Life of Hall County event.

146 community members came together at 8 a.m. on Saturday to support the fight against cancer. Registration was $35 per person for the 5k and $15 per person for the Fun Run. All proceeds from the event benefitted the American Cancer Society and East Georgia Cancer Coalition.

Young runner dressed as Spiderman for the “Heroes Against Cancer” initiative Photo by Gavin Beck

The UNG Relay for Life held this 5k to help reach their goal of raising $10,000 for the 2024 Relay for Life of Hall County event which UNG will host on April 19. The purpose of the event is to wrap up the Relay for Life season of fundraising by honoring all the cancer survivors, caregivers and those who were lost due to cancer in the past year.

Participants run past the Martha T. Nesbitt building to begin the race. Photo by Gavin Beck

Events like this give many people from the community another way to not only join the fight but support their loved ones who have battled cancer in ways they could not do otherwise. “I like doing 5ks. I’ve been a runner off and on for years and I like doing runs for charity,” said Joy Bolt, Dean of Libraries at UNG, “I also had a nephew pass away 3 weeks ago so I’m doing it in honor of Joshua.”

Joy Bolt, Dean of Libraries, participated in the race to support cancer awareness. Photo by Gavin Beck

UNG is a leadership school, it’s all about leadership, and leadership is all about people. There’s so many people that come across this journey of cancer, so I think in being leaders we need to support people. We all know somebody that’s faced cancer, so rallying together and saying ‘I’m here for you. I’m with you’ whether that’s walking or running or whatever it is, is why it’s important.

— Jessica Shannon, wife of UNG president Michael Shannon

This was the first charity race UNG has held on its Gainesville campus and Kevin Young, team leader for Relay for Life at UNG, expressed the desire to make the race an annual event.

“Doing an event like a 5k has great potential to raise a good portion of money, but also has the potential of really shining a light on UNG because we wanted to show the community how great UNG is,” said Young, “…we also want to show the community that UNG believes in higher purposes such as helping to fight cancer.”

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