“Your chance of winning Bunco is 1:12. In the U.S., the chance of a woman being diagnosed with invasive breast cancer in her lifetime is about 1 in 8.”
(source of statistic: The American Cancer Society)
What is the name of your Bunco for Breast Cancer event?
We kept it pretty simple for our first event – “Syracuse Area Bunco for Breast Cancer.” Now we use CNY BUnco (Central New York.) Really, the “Bunco for Breast Cancer” title says it all!
How long have you been holding your event?
Our very first event was April 5, 2008.
How has your event grown over the years?
The response to our first event was so outstanding, and we’re still going in 2012!
Do you set fundraising goals for each successive event?
When we first started planning the 2008 event, we hoped for 100 people, and we hoped to raise $2,000. Just goes to show you the power of Bunco players – we were joined by more than 180 people, and we raised $8,511!! And that does not include all the donations we collected for door prizes and basket raffle prizes! We were so thrilled and grateful to all who played a part.
How much have you raised to date?
Close to $50,000.
What motivates you to organize Bunco for Breast Cancer events?
It is very hard to explain. I’ve had absolutely no fundraising experience, but when I read about the other Bunco for Breast Cancer events throughout the country, I immediately knew that this was something that I wanted to do.
Organizing these events takes time, energy, and dedication, but it is the most amazing feeling standing in a room full of more than 180 people, all gathered for the same cause, all wanting to help. There's so much energy in the room. And when the survivors stand up before we start playing, I just know that our time has been well-spent. Plus, as an added bonus, people have FUN!
Do you have a personal connection to the cause?
There are several people very close to me who are either currently fighting, have survived, and who lost their battle with various forms of cancer. I am so very fortunate to not have been touched myself, but I’ve realized that I can’t ever take that for granted.
Do you have any words of wisdom for first-time event organizers?
One of the things that helped us the most was the information we got from the wonderful people who have organized events already. We learned things from their experiences that made planning our event so much easier! Take advantage of the network available to you.
Also, don’t be afraid to ask, but don’t be disappointed if you get turned down. It is very easy to get frustrated when you’re turned down for donations. But for every person or organization that can’t, there are many more people and organizations who can, and do, give generously.
To what extent does The Breast Cancer Research Foundation figure in your decision to hold a Bunco for Breast Cancer event?
After our first event, many people suggested that we support a local organization. However, we have continued to support The Breast Cancer Research Foundation. I believe this is the best group to support, because I know that for this organization, more than any other, the greatest percentage of the donation is going straight to research.
Everyone had a great time at our event, but make no mistake, we were all there to help put an end to breast cancer. The Breast Cancer Research Foundation makes the best use of our donations.