Badger Challenge raises money for cancer research
MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - 3,300 runners, walkers and cyclists took part in the Badger Challenge in Madison on Sunday to raise money for cancer research at the UW Carbone Cancer Center.
The money raised at the Badger Challenge goes directly to researchers at the Carbone Cancer Center in Madison, funding research for all types of cancer in hopes of finding a cure for people in Wisconsin.
“They take their best ideas, use the dollars to really generate and bridge the gap between the bench and the bedside leading to translational medicine and treating at the Carbone Cancer Center,” Dr. Deric Wheeler, a professor in the Department of Human Oncology at UW Carbone Cancer Center, said.
Now in its eighth year, the Badger Challenge brings families together in all different stages of their cancer journeys.
“Everybody that comes out here today is touched by cancer in some way,” Dr. Wheeler said. “We have a lot of families that are swarming their recently diagnosed mother, we have people that are here that are remembering their dad from years past, and we have people that are here that are survivors that have been through it and have been at the Carbone Cancer Center and are just riding and continuing their journey of their cancer discovery and treatment.”
The event used to be a bike ride only, but it has now expanded over the years to include a walk and run as well.
“People would tells us that they hated biking as much as they hated cancer so we added in the run and the walk so that people could come and really lower the bar. Participate at the level that they wanted to and it’s been a big hit,” Wheeler said.
Wheeler said the 5k walk and run and bike have been their biggest growing event with over 1,500 participants for that event alone.
As of Sunday morning, $925,000 has been raised. Organizers are hoping to raise $1 million by the end of this week.
“Whether it’s breast cancer, head and neck cancer, prostate cancer, cancers can have many different mechanisms that are shared and we want to spread the money across cancer researchers so that we can have a critical mass to find discoveries and spread them across different types of cancers to just speed up how fast we discover things,” he said.
Donations can still be made online. Donation buttons are open until Nov. 1. Fundraising efforts go through Dec. 31.
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