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American Cancer Society On Campus Year Round Ideas

Giving Chapters Ideas For Each Month Of The Year

It all begins with an idea. American Cancer Society On Campus Chapters are encouraged to create a year long activation plan around the four focus areas that the American Cancer Society represents. Below are example activities. 

January

 

Fundraising – Letter Writing Campaign: Old fashioned letter writing is still a wildly successful way to fundraise as people still love to receive something in the mail. Have a fun night at a club meeting and ask everyone to bring 20 or more addresses and stamps. Have paper and envelopes and have everyone fill out letters to who they want to ask to donate towards their fundraising. Make sure to include where to send back a donation! Examples can be found here.

Patient Support – Hope Lodge Drive: Work with the closest Hope Lodge or cancer center near the chapter to see what items they may need for the facility. Then set up drop off locations around campus for those items to be dropped off at. Also check to see if they have an Amazon Wish List and utilize that for people to go online and send items. Find a list of all Hope Lodges here.

Research – HPV Cancer Free: Utilize resources found at cancer.org/hpv and set up an awareness activity day at your campus to spread the word for parents to know about the HPV Vaccine and how it can prevent up to six types of cancer.

Advocacy – State Priorities: Visit fightcancer.org and search your campus’s state to find out the advocacy priorities for that state. Then, get involved at your states level.

Cancer Awareness – Cervical Cancer

February

Fundraising – Stick A Fork In Cancer: Ask 5 different popular restaurants near campus to each sponsor a give back night for different night of the week. Then heavily promote it across campus. To increase revenue, see if the restaurant will allow an onsite activity such as a basket raffle or awareness table.

Patient Support – Love Notes Around The World: Everyone has been touched by cancer in some way. Love Notes Around The World is a volunteer-led ACS platform where individuals and groups have opportunities to create, share and/or send messages of compassion to cancer patients in treatment, caretakers, care providers, and others in need. Find out more at acsengage.org/acslovenotes

Research – World Cancer Day: World Cancer Day is celebrated on February 4th. Get personal by asking everyone to record and post a short video on their social media channels stating why being a part of ACSOC is important to them.

Advocacy – State Cancer Action Day: Chapter members can sign up to attend and help out at the state’s lobby day. Each state has a different date a nd a slightly different strategy, so visit the state’s page to learn more at fightcancer.org.

Cancer Awareness Months – Gallbladder/Bile Duct

March

Fundraising – Phone-A-Thon: Plan a fun evening with snacks and food and get your club together for a Phone-A-Thon night. Have each member come prepared with a list of 20 of more contacts who they are going to call or text and ask for donations while on the phone. More details on Phone-A-Thon can be found here.

Patient Support – Cancer Survivors Network: Take some time to check out the online Cancer Survivors Network at csn.cancer.org which is an online discussion board for anyone to access. A great resource to share with any survivors & caregivers you have conversations with along with our toll free hotline, 1.800.227.2345.

Research – Create For Life Challenge: Get a chance to win scholarships for school while being creative through digital print, audio and video. Choose a type of cancer or early detection and submit a creative piece to promote the work that the American Cancer Society is doing. Find details by clicking here.

Advocacy – Campus Advocacy: As campus’ year-end events roll out, emphasize CAN with a petition, signs, and activities. Find resources here (Resource Coming)

Cancer Awareness Months – Anal Cancer, Colon Cancer, Kidney Cancer, Multiple Myeloma

April

Fundraising – ACS DJ Dance Party: Chapters can reach out to college DJ’s and ask for them to livestream and showcase their skills while supporting the fight against cancer. Find a popular venue, line up a variety of DJ’s and encourage participation.

Patient Support – Tree Planting: Request permission and plant a tree on campus in honor of cancer patients and their fight. Create a short ceremony around it and invite the campus to attend.

Research – Attend a Research Fair At A Local College: College of Public Health’s or Colleges of Medicine’s host research fairs at the end of each semester. Attend the research fair as a chapter to hear about their current efforts.

Advocacy – Alliance For Childhood Cancer Action Day: In partnership with ACS Cancer Action Network, chapter members can sign up to be a voice for childhood cancer. This activity includes a virtual training opportunity to prepare members to tell their story and tie it into current legislative needs.

Cancer Awareness Month – Testicular Cancer, Esophageal Cancer, Head & Neck Cancer

April

 

Fundraising – ACS DJ Dance Party: Chapters can reach out to college DJ’s and ask for them to livestream and showcase their skills while supporting the fight against cancer. Find a popular venue, line up a variety of DJ’s and encourage participation.

Patient Support – Tree Planting: Request permission and plant a tree on campus in honor of cancer patients and their fight. Create a short ceremony around it and invite the campus to attend.

Research – Attend a Research Fair At A Local College: College of Public Health’s or Colleges of Medicine’s host research fairs at the end of each semester. Attend the research fair as a chapter to hear about their current efforts.

Advocacy – Alliance For Childhood Cancer Action Day: In partnership with ACS Cancer Action Network, chapter members can sign up to be a voice for childhood cancer. This activity includes a virtual training opportunity to prepare members to tell their story and tie it into current legislative needs.

Cancer Awareness Month – Testicular Cancer, Esophageal Cancer, Head & Neck Cancer

May

 

Fundraising – ResearcHERS: ResearcHERS empowers women to fundraise in support of women-led cancer research, but it’s more than just a fundraising campaign. A sisterhood of purpose determined to sustain women-led cancer research and recognize the trailblazers in the field who identify as women. While the American Cancer Society has funded 49 researchers who have gone on to receive the Nobel Prize, none of them has been a woman…yet. Join the ResearcHERS movement and help us fuel the future of women-led cancer research by finding a campaign here.

Patient Support – Road To Recovery: Every day thousands of cancer patients need a ride to treatment, but some may not have a way to get there. The American Cancer Society Road To Recovery program provides transportation to and from treatment for people with cancer who do not have a ride or are unable to drive themselves. Find about more about Road To Recovery and how to become a driver by clicking here.

Research – Rock Activity: Using cancer.org, choose cancer research and facts and figures and place those on decorated rocks and spread those around you campus to spread what the American Cancer Society is doing in research.

Advocacy – Petition Drive: Visit fightcancer.org and find the newest petition and use the month of March to get as many petitions signed as possible on campus. Remember that anyone can sign a petition regardless of age.

Cancer Awareness Month – Melanoma & Skin Cancer, Brain Cancer, Bladder Cancer

June

 

Fundraising – ACS Challenge Me: An opportunity for campus students to raise funds virtually. Students can pick a challenge to complete once they hit the fundraising goal and livestream on their social channels. More information and to sign up can be found here.

Patient Support – National Cancer Survivor’s Day: Utilize chapter social media channels and spread words of encouragement and videos for cancer survivors.

Research – Diversity In Cancer Research Interns: The DICR program’s first initiative is an internship program that targets URM undergraduate students to expose them to cancer research as a strategy to ultimately increase the number of URM people who enter the cancer research field. Apply today as applications close October 15th for the Summer 2023 program so find details and apply today by clicking here.

Advocacy – Cancer Action Network Pride Events: Celebrate Pride Month by joining the Cancer Action Network at pride events across the country. Visit www.fightcancer.org/pride to learn more and chapters can contact an American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network Grassroots Manager to find events nearby.

Cancer Awareness Month – National Cancer Survivor Month

July

 

Fundraising – ACS Challenge Me: An opportunity for campus students to raise funds virtually. Students can pick a challenge to complete once they hit the fundraising goal and livestream on their social channels. More information and to sign up can be found here.

Patient Support – Give Your Time: Assist with yard work or landscaping at a local cancer center or Hope Lodge. Find a wheelbarrow, gardening gloves and get to work!

Research – Fun Run/Walk: Adding physical activity is a great way to decrease cancer risk. Host a Fun Run/Walk and encourage everyone to participate by awarding prizes for certain accomplishments.

Advocacy – Lights Of Hope Kickoff: It is time to start fundraising for Lights of Hope! Consider purchasing a Lights of Hope bag in honor/memory/support of someone. We also encourage campuses to sell bags on their campus and have tons of resources to help at www.fightcancer.org/lights-hope.

Cancer Awareness Month – Sarcoma/Bone Cancer

August

 

Fundraising – Discovery Shop Support: Before the new school year begins, clean out closets and mail items to a Discovery Shop to be sold in support of the fight against cancer. Find out more and how to get a shipping label here.

Patient Support – ACS Bookshop: The American Cancer Society publishes books to help people navigate the cancer experience. Since 2006, our books have won over 100 awards for content and design excellence. Visit the online bookstore.

Research – Healthy Eating: Research has proven that healthy living contributes to a healthier life. As a chapter, make a plan for what healthy snacks and drinks will be available at meetings and activities for the year. Find ideas here.

Advocacy – Build A Movement: As chapters head back to campus, build and galvanize students around advocacy. (Resources Coming Soon)

September

 

Fundraising – Gold Together Champions: Be a champion in the fight against childhood cancer. Sign up to be a champion and raise funds in a leaderboard competition campaign in September. Find a campaign here.

Patient Support – Curefest: For individuals near Washington DC, participate in Curefest for Childhood Cancer with activities including an advocacy workshop and a rally to the capital. Details on Curefest can be found here.

Research – Get Educated: As of March 1, 2021, 46 active multi-year grants for a total of $27 million are currently being funded specific to childhood cancer. Take time as a club to include research moments at your September meeting around childhood cancer. You can find information here.

Advocacy – Lights of Hope: After months of fundraising, it is time to show off the chapters Lights of Hope bags! Send bags to the main event in Washington DC, or hold or attend an event on campus.. If you do light up a display on campus, post on Social Media to show your support utilizing #LightsOfHope.

Cancer Awareness Month – Childhood Cancer, Leukemia, Lymphoma, Ovarian Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Thyroid Cancer, Uterine Cancer

Students in front of balloons at Relay For Life event at Michigan State University

October

 

Fundraising – Witches Ride: A fun campus activity where everyone is tasked to decorate a broom, commit to raising a minimum of $250, dress up as a witch or warlock and pass out candy at a local fall festival. Make it fun by creating awards for different categories.

Patient Support – Turn Campus Pink: In support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, turn the campus pink with posters, ribbons, chalk and anything else creative. Utilize the awareness to also spread awareness for American Cancer Society programs and services for breast cancer patients and families such as Reach To Recovery.

Research – Mammogram Reminders: For Breast Cancer Awareness Month it is a great opportunity to remind the community about getting mammograms. At a club meeting, encourage everyone to send texts out to their loved ones reminding them to schedule and get a mammogram and also put up creative posters around campus to spread awareness. Remember, men get breast cancer too. For more information, click here.

Advocacy – Take To Twitter: Tweeting at U.S. Senators is a highly impactful way to ensure they recognize the importance that constituents place in making fighting cancer a national priority. Click on the link here to select the state to find local State Senators and use the pre-populated tweet to let them know that the campus wants cancer to be a top priority.

Cancer Awareness Month – Breast Cancer, Metastatic Breast Cancer, Liver Cancer

November

 

Fundraising – Grow Nation: An opportunity for students to embrace your hair and become a part of GrowNation in November by growing out that hair while asking for donations.

Patient Support – Caregivers Month: Caregivers Awareness Month is recognized in November. Plan a special evening for caregivers on campus to give an opportunity to get together. Also remember that even if their loved one has past, they are still recognized as a caregiver.

Research – Great American Smoke Out: Plan an awareness activity for the Great American Smoke Out on the third Thursday of November to talk about the importance of quitting smoking. Resources can be found here.

Advocacy – Introduce Yourself: After the elections at the beginning of the month, you will have new lawmakers. Encourage them to join the fight. Utilize pre-written introductory messages and reach out to your new lawmakers to welcome them to the ACS CAN family. (Resources Coming Soon)

Cancer Awareness Month – Lung Cancer, Neuroendocrine Cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, Stomach Cancer

December

 

Fundraising – Letters From Santa: Post on social media and send notes home with your local elementary schools and day care centers that for a donation to ACS, a letter will be sent home to your child from Santa! Make it personable for the child. Remember to plan ahead so the letters arrive before Christmas.

Patient Support – Holiday Greetings: Holidays can be a hard time. Find a way to make the holidays special such as making and sending ornaments to survivors and caregivers or simply sending a holiday card. Be sure to also post on social media a holiday message with a reminder about our hotline and live chat option for anyone that may need it this holiday season.

Research – TheoryLab Podcasts: The American Cancer Society Research Department offers research podcasts. Encourage each club member to listen to a podcast and report back. Podcasts can be found here.

Advocacy – Celebrate Accomplishments! Advocacy can be hard, but it is rewarding. Look back on the year (and check out CAN’s year in review on fightcancer.org) and share all the successes ACS CAN has had this year!