Health & Wellness

College Dodgeball Tournament Raises Money To Fight Cancer

University of Minnesota students combined something fun with a serious effort to raise money and awareness.

A Saturday morning in a gym filled with friends playing dodge ball sounds like a run of the mill activity for students on any college campus. But students at the University of Minnesota took it up a notch. They showed up to play the game to help fight cancer.

Colleges Against Cancer is a network of student groups on hundreds of college campuses.The chapters help raise money and awareness in the fight against cancer on behalf of the American Cancer Society.

The University of Minnesota chapter recently hosted the "Protect Your Balls" (pun intended) Dodge Ball Tournament, an event focusing on raising funds and awareness in the fight against testicular cancer.

The idea for this event came from a student club member who felt strongly about bringing attention to this type of cancer. While there is a lot of awareness when it comes to women checking themselves for breast cancer and getting mammograms, the club wanted to bring a similar level of awareness to testicular cancer.

Students from all walks of life join the club for a variety of reasons. Some of them simply want to help. Others have lost someone to cancer and want to give back.

Event organizer Etta Winje is one of them. She's a junior, and joined the club as a freshman after losing her grandfather to cancer. Since joining, she has discovered a love for engaging students in activities and events that raise money for cancer research and education.

The University of Minnesota event involved mixed-gender teams of six or seven people whose entry fees were donated to the Cancer Society. The tournament ran for over two hours and teams played in a best of two out of three format until a victor was crowned. It was a morning of laughter, competition and joy combined with a sense of purpose. Participants knew they were making a difference in the lives of cancer patients.

Next up for this group? They'll join other schools in participating in this year's Colleges Against Cancer Relay for Life set for Saturday, April 4.

How can you start something good?

Colleges Against Cancer has active chapters on nearly 600 college campuses. You can join them in helping to end suffering from cancer on their campuses by participating in their fundraisers, or making a direct donation (click here).

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