‘Another exceptional year’

‘Together We Care’ generates $26,287 for T.E.A.R. fund

HAILED A SUCCESS — Celebrating the success of the fifth-annual “Together We Care” soccer tournament/cancer fundraiser that raised $26,287 for the Trinity Emergency Assistance Relief fund, which provides financial help to cancer patients with a variety of emergency needs, were, bottom row, from left, Rhonda Clevenger, event chair and planning committee, Steubenville High School; and Chris Orris, Valley Hospice; second row, Sara Brown, SHS girls soccer team; Joann Mulrooney, vice president of operations and chief operating officer, Trinity Health System; Marsha Lewis, patient advocate; Joe Edmiston, executive director of development at Trinity Health System; Lynn Barbe, director of oncology services; and Seana Ragoosa, SHS girls soccer team; third row, Mikayla Crownover, SHS girls soccer team; Carey Ferralli, planning committee, Edison; Diane Shultz, planning committee, Edison; Carrie Brancazio, planning committee, SHS; Michelle Wood, planning committee, SHS; and Jacob Clevenger, SHS boys soccer team; and fourth row, Ted Gorman, SHS principal; Stacey Walker, planning committee, SHS; Tom Timmons, Wesbanco; Cheryl Rubish, SHS girls soccer; Melissa Bowers, Harding Middle School; and Greg Bowers, coach, SHS boys soccer team. Planning committee members also included representatives from Catholic Central and Indian Creek high schools. The fundraiser included a soccer tournament with girls and boys teams from Steubenville, Edison, Catholic Central and Indian Creek high schools. -- Contributed

STEUBENVILLE — The fifth-annual “Together We Care” soccer tournament/cancer fundraiser has marked “another exceptional year,” according to organizers.

The event — a tournament held Oct. 7 at Harding Stadium in Steubenville in addition to other fundraisers held throughout October — raised $26,287 for the T.E.A.R. fund at the Tony Teramana Cancer Center. T.E.A.R. is an acronym for Trinity Emergency Assistance Relief fund, which provides financial help to cancer patients with a variety of modest emergency needs.

And the amount represents a $1,277 increase from 2016, according to event chairperson Rhonda Clevenger.

“The event has been taking place over the last five years with more than $91,000 raised, which benefits cancer patients from the area,” Clevenger explained. “At least 26 patients will benefit this year from the proceeds with as many as two to three times that amount that could possibly benefit from the money raised.”

The fundraiser included a soccer tournament with girls and boys teams from Steubenville, Edison, Catholic Central and Indian Creek high schools who help raise awareness about breast cancer while raising funds.

“There are many activities that take place on the day of the event with fundraising efforts from area businesses, individuals and the area schools that are ongoing throughout the month,” she explained.

“How great it is to see so many people coming together to make this event a success each year,” Clevenger said. “We receive help and support from the soccer teams, parents, coaches, principals, athletic directors, the community and the area businesses,” she said.

“Without all of this support we could not continue to grow,” Clevenger added, extending “a special thank-you” to the event’s major sponsors, including Harding Middle School, The Target Shop, Barium & Chemicals Inc., Naylor Law Offices, LTD, Water Transport, GPC Contracting, UPS Hollywood Plaza and Tom and Sarah Gentile.

“The most rewarding part of all is that this event will provide financial assistance to at least 26 cancer patients with the possibility of helping many more. It’s a great joy to be a part of this,” she said.

Together We Care was organized by parent representatives from each team. They included Carey Ferralli, Diane Shultz, April Pearce, Laura Lewis, Martha Duff, Sara Nocera, Carrie Brancazio, Stacy Walker, Sarah Gentile, Chris Orris, Valley Hospice and Clevenger.

“The goal this year is to raise awareness about cancer and to raise enough money that we will be able to help several more families than we did last year,” Clevenger said in a story promoting the October event.

“Since everything is done through donations, we have to rely on the generosity of the local businesses and the community to continue to make this a success.”

Meetings for “Together We Care” began in June with everything in full swing beginning in August. There was at least one parent representative from each team in addition to many other parents who got involved in the fund-raising process, according to Clevenger, who explained the players are encouraged to help in advance, but they also help to run the event throughout the day.

“We hope to show the players that they need to give back to the very community that supports them and that by volunteering for just one day, there’s a cancer patient out there who will be able to worry a little less,” she had said.

“This all began six years ago by passing around a container in the stands to help a soccer mom with breast cancer,” Clevenger explained.

“The idea was then raised to create a soccer tournament between the area schools during breast cancer awareness month to raise money for those cancer patients in need of assistance. The event has just taken off from there by becoming bigger and better each year.”