TEAM STACEY will be swimming together and fundraising for the 10th year in 2018 at SAA-Sound to Cove in memory of Stacey Rose Leondis. This year, TEAM STACEY will pass the $1 million fundraising mark as a team in addition to being the top overall fundraising team across the country in 2017.
According to family, Stacey was a beautiful, smart and exuberant young woman. Stacey was diagnosed with osteosarcoma when she was 16 years old and passed away at the young age of 23. During those seven years, she graduated high school, graduated Yale University and was accepted to Mount Sinai medical school.
Ellen Leondis, Stacey’s mother, on the impact SAA has had: “Being part of the SAA family has allowed us to continue Stacey’s fight for a cure and celebrate her inspirational life.”
Pam Danbusky, a Nassau-Suffolk Committee member shared her memory of Stacey and why she swims: “I swim for Stacey Rose. Someone I wanted to be like, someone younger who I looked up to, someone who I wish was still here. If we were all more like Stacey the world would be a better place. I swim to keep her legacy and beauty alive in this world.”
Swim Across America salutes TEAM STACEY for all their hard work fundraising in her memory and look forward to celebrating the next $1 million raised and the impact it will have! You can donate to TEAM STACEY today to help fight this dreaded disease.
All summer, we’re offering an exciting opportunity to show your love for SAA and win a $100 SwimOutlet.com gift card. Enter by tagging @saaswim and @swimoutlet in your photo from your swim and add the hashtag #SAASwimOutletto the caption and we’ll pick the best one. Grab your friends and family and show us the best the SAA community has to offer like these winners!
SAA Family Tree is a monthly focus on stories that display the impact all the members of the Swim Across America family have both locally and nationally. If you have a story or link you’d like to share, please send here.
Swim Across America is excited to celebrate our 31st year with a Swim Across America-branded backpack for all participants that hit the WaveMaker fundraising goal.
This is your chance to go the extra mile and join the exclusive WaveMaker club to show your SAA pride year-round. Featuring a timeless design, the official 2018 WaveMaker backpack offers functionality and style including a laptop sleeve and tons of storage compartments for all your needs. Don’t forget to show your SAA swagwith buttons available for the first time. Register today and set your fundraising goal to WaveMaker!
Other highlights of the backpack include:
Large, zippered main compartment
Interior multi-function organizer sized to fit up to an iPhone 6S plus
Easy access padded laptop pocket (fits up to a 15” laptop)
Front zippered pocket to store a tablet (fits up to a 10” tablet with a case)
Dual elastic water bottle pockets
Padded, adjustable shoulder straps
Neoprene top grab handle
Sport mesh padded back panels for cool and dry comfort
Swim Across America is making fundraising easier through social media!
You can now link your Swim Across America fundraising page directly with Facebook. Once you register for your SAA charity swim, you can directly link your personal Swim Across America fundraising page to Facebook. You’ll be able to easily spread the word, collect donations and track your progress on Facebook. All donations through Facebook will be received by SAA and reflected in your fundraising thermometer!
Here’s How To Connect Your Fundraiser to Facebook:
1. Log in to your participant center.
2. Scroll down and click on ‘Connect Fundraiser to Facebook.’
3. It will redirect you to Facebook and a pop-up where you will click ‘OK’ or ‘Continue.’
4. You will then be prompted to go to your Fundraiser on Facebook if it doesn’t take you there immediately.
5. Now you can edit all of your fundraising information and details you wish to include.
6. Promote your fundraiser by sharing a post on your timeline or inviting friends and family to your fundraising page.
This new Facebook integration allows you to spread the word of your fundraising efforts and reach more people quicker and easier then ever before. For questions about using fundraisers on Facebook scroll down to the bottom part of our FAQ page.
Swim Across America, a 501(c)3 that hosts charity swims with a purpose of granting the proceeds to fund cancer research, is pleased to announce it is awarding a $50,000 grant to Dr. Robyn Gartrell of Columbia University Medical Center and a $50,000 grant to Dr. Julie Saba of UC Children’s Hospital Oakland. The awarding of these two grants is a result of additional fundraising that was received in 2017 and is in addition to the $4,891,422 that SAA awarded for 2018 to its beneficiaries.
Since it’s founding in 1987, SAA charity swims have funded more than $75 million to cancer research. SAA grant researchers have developed multiple FDA approved immunotherapies, gene therapy and personalized therapy treatments. Over 1.6 million Americans are diagnosed with cancer every year. Because of SAA grants, oncologists have been able to conduct research that otherwise wouldn’t have been funded and more families have hope in the fight against cancer.
Dr. Gartrell will use her grant to study childhood brain tumors, including high-grade glioma (HGG), the most aggressive type of brain cancer in children. New treatment methods using the immune system, called immunotherapies, offer promise for helping to treat HGG in children. Dr. Gartrell’s team will study specific immune cells in and around HGG to determine the best approach in applying immunotherapy to this devastating disease.
Dr. Saba will use her grant to study a cancer-related gene (AF1q) first identified in an infant with leukemia. Some types of cancers have high AF1q levels, and patient outcomes are worse in AF1q-positive tumors and leukemia. Scientists have concluded that AF1q is a “genetic driver” of cancer. The proposed project and SAA grant funding will compare the protein profiles on the surface of cancer cells either containing or lacking AF1q. By doing so, Dr. Saba expects to identify proteins that act as surrogate markers of AF1q expression that could be targeted by immune therapy. It is hoped that this study will move closer to developing a cure for cancers in which AF1q is a genetic driver.
Swim Across America celebrated the end of the year across the country by presenting checks to our esteemed beneficiaries. Here is a collection of smiling faces as the hard fundraising work is now seeing its impact multiplied in the fight against cancer.