‘A significant cause’ | Winners Named for Breast and GYN Health Project Holiday Sweepstakes – Times-Standard

Winners have been named for the Breast and GYN Health Project’s 21st Annual Vacation Benefit Raffle.

The 2022 winners are:

• Eliza Onate of Eureka, who won a seven-night stay in Greensboro, Vermont

• Suzy Smith of Eureka, three night stay at Bodega Bay Birdwatch

• Claudia Myers from McKinleyville, electric bike

• Josh York from Fields Landing, three night stay in Sunriver, Oregon

• Shyanne Rieke of McKinleyville, seven night stay at Lake Tahoe.

The Breast and GYN Health Project is a local non-profit organization that provides support, resources, and education for people facing breast or gynecological cancer issues or diagnoses. The raffle is its biggest fundraiser and therefore a big reason the organization is able to continue providing free services to the community.

The “Vacation Benefit Raffle” was first launched in 2002 when the Advisory Board of the Breast and Gynecological Health Project (then known as the Humboldt Community Breast Health Project) was looking for a new way to raise funds for customer-centric core organization.

“One of the advisory board members found someone to donate a week at a villa in Normandy, France. That was the only prize that year,” said Rose Gale-Zoellick, executive director of the Arcata-based Breast and GYN Health Project “The woman who won the trip to France 21 years ago now lives in Virginia and continues to be a loyal seller of holiday raffle tickets.”

This year, 111 volunteers grabbed packets of holiday raffle tickets and searched for people to try to win a holiday, Gale-Zoellick said.

“Humboldt County and the wide circle of BGHP supporters are incredibly generous and compassionate,” she said. “My heart is so grateful to every volunteer who takes a bundle of raffle tickets to sell. Every volunteer seller makes a serious effort to do their best to do a great job of selling tickets. I appreciate these volunteers because they are also community ambassadors who tell their friends, neighbors and loved ones about the free services of the BGHP Cancer Resource Center.

Rose Gale-Zoellick is the executive director of the Arcata-based nonprofit Breast and Gynecological Health Project. (Courtesy of BGHP)

She added, “Because it is illegal for nonprofits in California to sell raffle tickets online, we are trying to be creative about ways to sell raffle tickets one-on-one. or in person. … We send information about the holiday draw to our fan mailing list and people send in their orders. Now that COVID has receded, we have started holding in-person raffles at the Arcata Farmer’s Market and outside our office in Arcata. And local businesses also help sell tickets. This year, Bubbles, Coast Central Credit Union, Redwood Capital Bank, the Office of Drs. Mahoney and Cobb and Scrapper’s Edge were also sites where people could buy tickets.

Gale-Zoellick says that every year community members also come forward and donate their vacation homes to support the Breast and Gynecological Health Project.

“This year we’ve added an e-bike to try and lessen the carbon footprint of airfare offered with our longer, long-distance trips,” she said.

Over the past three years, through the raffle, the Breast and Gynecological Health Project has been able to raise more than $100,000, she said.

“That’s about a quarter of our annual budget,” Gale-Zoellick noted. “These funds are used to provide all of our Cancer Resource Center services, consultations with our medical consultant, patient navigation, eight different support groups and Spanish-speaking assistance free of charge.”

In addition to raising funds, the holiday raffle also creates compassionate actions, Gale-Zoellick said.

“Every year, several people buy raffle tickets for the holidays and request that staff donate them to people who are currently undergoing cancer treatment,” she said. “There are people who give tickets as gifts to their friends and family. We hear many stories about how cancer has touched the lives of people who buy raffle tickets. We hear stories of men who are suffering from breast cancer and/or are afraid of breast cancer. Regularly, when someone in the community is diagnosed with breast or gynecological cancer, they contact BGHP to tell us that they have purchased raffle tickets in the past and now need to use the services.

She added: “For many lucky trip winners over the years, trips really are the vacation of a lifetime. A woman learned to surf on her trip to Hawaii. Many winners have arranged to meet beloved friends or family members. This year’s e-bike winner immediately opened up about her dream of using it on the Hammond Trail.

Claudia Myers from McKinleyville prepares to go for a spin on her new e-bike.  (Courtesy of Claudia Myers)
Claudia Myers from McKinleyville prepares to go for a spin on her new e-bike. (Courtesy of Claudia Myers)

Gale-Zoellick says she thinks the Breast and GYN Health Project’s holiday fundraiser remains so popular year after year because it’s “fun and different.”

“Many nonprofits have a dinner auction; we don’t do that kind of event,” she said. “It’s fun to buy raffle tickets for a chance to win a vacation, and ticket buyers know the money they’re spending is supporting an important cause. It’s a win-win. »

For more information about the Breast and Gynecological Health Project, call 707-825-8345 or visit https://bghp.org.

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