The club, Carlmont Youths Against Cancer (CYAC) is a group of students who strive to volunteer for cancer-related organizations and raise awareness for the disease.
Each week, the club meets in T-10 to discuss ways to raise awareness along with volunteering opportunities for the club to participate in.
Senior Mackenna Galicia started the club in 2012 during her sophomore year at Carlmont. Since then, the club has gained more members each year and has become a popular club on campus.
Galicia said, “I started the club because my brother was diagnosed with cancer at the end of his freshman year at Carlmont. Going with my brother to some of his doctor appointments and visiting him in the hospital, I realized that there are many children and teens that are inflicted with cancer. It was sad to see how many of these kids rarely had visitors or were confined to their room for days or even weeks. I wanted to have a positive impact on the lives of those affected with cancer and also raise awareness about this disease.”
Some volunteering opportunities CYAC has participated in this year include: Relay For Life, Brave the Bay 5k, Make-A-Wish Foundation’s Santa Walk and Fun Run, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night Walk, and numerous others.
“Fortunately, my brother is now cancer-free and I wanted to ‘pay it forward’ and volunteer my time and energy to different cancer organizations. I also want to help people learn more about the disease,” said Galicia.
Senior Donna Ghaemi said, “My favorite part about volunteering with the club is trying to help individuals and families who have been affected by cancer. I think that positive energy and little deeds can go a long way. I also like getting as many people involved as possible. If there are a lot of people involved, then help can be provided more efficiently.”
Though the club is made to raise awareness and volunteer for cancer-related events, some people are also very interested in becoming more aware of the disease themselves.
Senior Victoria Poslavsky said, “I didn’t know much about cancer when I first joined CYAC, but I became much more aware of how many people suffer from it and other aspects surrounding it because of this club. I’m very glad I joined since it’s made me become more educated, so I can now go raise more awareness in others.”
While CYAC provides many positive outcomes for members of the club, numerous cancer patients and organizations are benefiting from the volunteer work and awareness that CYAC strive to complete.