The Power of Giving Back: Beyond the Buzz of Boobyball

Photo by by Valerie Keeler.

A new generation of philanthropists are here and they’re not holding back. A bold and daring campaign has made its way to Ottawa and people are taking notice. Returning for a second year, Boobyball offers a fresh twist on the traditional and sometimes stodgy Ottawa fundraiser all while bringing an unconventional approachability to the topic of breast health.

Boobyball is Rethink Breast Cancer’s principal fundraising event which fosters a new generation of young and influential breast cancer supporters and brings relevant awareness to the 40s and under crowd. By approaching the cause with style and sass, Rethink has been successful in helping young people be proactive about their health while also attending one of the hottest tickets in town.

The Ottawa Boobyball Committee is made up of over twenty women who hope their efforts help to take some of the fear out of the conversation. Co-chairs Kathleen McGuire and Rachel Kerr are the leading force within the committee and boast of the diverse skill set of the volunteers and how they have become an asset in making an impact across the community.

“We have a really strong team with a wide array of skills. It was easy to place people with tasks that they would knock out of the park. We have event planners, marketing and PR professionals and students, sales specialists, you name it, we have the women for the job!” says Kerr.

Many young women who are starting careers or that have small children, although they belong to a smaller cancer demographic, they too can have lives shaken by the disease.

“When we started planning the inaugural event in Ottawa, someone near and dear to me relapsed with breast cancer. She was originally diagnosed when she was young. It hit home” says McGuire.

Revolutionizing the breast cancer movement takes a “group of smart, fun, creative women. Everyone who’s been a part of it over the past two years have inspired me — they come together with passion to make a difference” says McGuire.

FAll2016_Booby Call outRethink Breast Cancer founder and executive director MJ DeCoteau is proud that Boobyball has become one of the most coveted and high profile fundraising events, raising over $3.8 million dollars since 2002. “After fifteen years the fundraiser has officially become — not just a party —but a movement, with events all across Canada that stimulate breast awareness conversation and engage thousands of young people in the cause.”

As the movement gains momentum, it may be no surprise that last year, when Ottawa kicked off the first annual charity bash, they raised $58,000 dollars for Rethink.

“The funds raised through Boobyball support Rethink Breast Cancer’s work for young people concerned about and affected by breast cancer including education, advocacy, support and resources” says DeCoteau who expects the second year in Ottawa to be a sold-out success.