Why do I Relay? It’s months of preparation and hard work and, in all honesty, every year I ask myself the same question. Then, I look around the track. I see the joy and laughter on the smiling faces, the emotional hugs between family and friends as they remember someone they have lost, and the look of determination on the faces of the Survivors and Relayers as they take to the track – everyone ready to tell this horrible disease to (pardon my language) f$&% off.
What is it about this event that made me want to get involved? I grew up in a family where community involvement was the norm. There were thousands of volunteer hours given to various organisations. As a kid, the lesson I took away from my parents’ and grandparents’ involvement was that if you can help, then you do help. Having participated in Relay for Life in Canada, it was a natural choice for me to get involved in 2013 when Relay came to Kilkenny. It’s a decision that I’m always grateful I made. It’s not just about that one weekend though. It’s about meeting the people I’ve met through Relay throughout the year and having a chat and a laugh on the streets of Kilkenny – it’s given me a sense of community on an island that isn’t my native home.