Sammi Joyce played for a team that participated in the 1st Compete for the Cure Event in 2010.
Now, 8 years later, she is one of the event’s organizers. When asked why she continued to support the Breast Cancer Advocacy, Sammi had this to say:
“I’ve been playing softball for my whole life — I first came to a tournament as one of these young girls here, at around 25 or 26. I fell in love with the ladies who do this program, and I just wanted to help,” said Joyce.
People Like Us (PLU) is a nonprofit group that champions breast cancer survivors by organizing fundraising and awareness events in Massachusetts. It was founded in 2004 by four courageous women who decided to do something about the disease that has personally affected them all.
Their first venture was also something close to their hearts – a golf tournament. Overwhelmed by the huge crowd turnout, they continued to organize events to raise money for breast cancer research. Now, with the help of other passionate volunteers, People Like Us continue to make a difference for survivors in Massachusetts.
The first Compete for A Cure event was held in 2010 and raised over $12,000 for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer.
Now on its 9th year, Compete for a Cure has transformed into a much-awaited community event.
The 2018 event saw over 20 teams competing for the top prize at Hartshorn Field. This was a long way from the handful of teams that participated during the first few years of Compete for A Cure. Players from Rhode Island and nearby states now flock to Massachusetts to compete for the top prize.
It’s not common that you find teams from different states and divisions in one event. However, the opportunity to play and help breast cancer survivors inspire the women to come together every year.
People Like Us also want to encourage young women to live a healthy lifestyle and become aware of their cancer risk. Many players have been coached by organizers since they were 4 or 5 years old. By bringing them into the tourney, they hope to influence these young women to take hold of their breast health.
Advocates were active both in and out of the softball field. Local businesses sponsored teams, some sold bracelets, and food items while others made generous donations to the cause.
Indeed, the battle against breast cancer can only be won together. People Like Us raised over $150,000 in 9 years for breast cancer research and helping local survivors and their families.