The 10th annual American Cancer Society's Relay for Life is facing problems this year, according to Jenni Campbell, a long-time volunteer and team recruiter.
The community event, which takes place at Willow Elementary April 20, typically draws upwards of 45 teams and 5,000 supporters, has lost many student participants to the two-year-old Agoura High School event, which takes place one week later, April 26.
"The American Cancer Society has a directive to roll out youth events," Campbell said. "And we welcome the high school event and the awareness they bring. The kids have great spirit. We just need to change the palette, so to speak."
Currently, there are 14 teams that are registered, and, for the first time, the program is working without a chair person.
"I just want to let people know to just come out, even if you don't have a team," she said. "It's all about building the foundation for 2014, rebranding the relay and coming out of the gate strong. We welcome the public to come out and show their support. We'll have food and great entertainment. All are welcome."
Campbell made her plea, for the second time, before City Council at Wednesday night's meeting.
"We are splitting the stock," she told the council "The value goes down a little bit, and now we're going to see it really rise back up, because Agoura High can really rock it and the community can rock it."
After her three-minute presentation, Mayor Denis Weber announced that there will be a city team, captained by Mayor Pro Tem William Koehler.
"The mayor and I had a discussion this past week about this fine event, and I went through somewhat of a life-changing event last year," Koehler said from the dais. "This is very close to my heart. I'm very happy to champion a team."
Campbell said that the money raised by the event will go to the Road to Recovery Program, which offers patients free shuttle bus rides to and from treatments. Other programs include beauty counseling, free hotel lodging for patients, and breast cancer counseling services.
For information on starting a team, contact Campbell at 818-292-0637 or at Jennilou67@hotmail.com.
You can also register at www.relayforlife.org/agouraca.