FAIRFAX, Va., Oct. 20, 2015 — The Oakton High School girls volleyball teams hosted their 10th Annual Dig Pink® Rally yesterday, raising more than $12,000 for The Side-Out Foundation, which supports metastatic breast cancer research. Side-Out has raised nearly $10 million in 10 years, with much of these funds coming from Dig Pink® events hosted by high school and college volleyball teams each October for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The money raised at these events goes directly to funding Side-Out’s own cutting-edge clinical trials.
Oakton volleyball coach and Side-Out founder Rick Dunetz was personally affected by breast cancer when his mother, Gloria, was diagnosed with the disease for the second time in 2004. Her battle against breast cancer was his inspiration for creating Side-Out and it also became a rallying cry for his volleyball team that year. Since then, Gloria Dunetz remained inspired by Rick’s teams and their persistence to win, and was a huge supporter of his players until she passed away in August 2010. Her legacy lives on through Dig Pink® events, which now take place in communities across the country each year.
“It’s wonderful to see this movement continue to grow and gain more support and attention,” Dunetz said. “My mom would be so proud of what teams like ours and the tens of thousands of others across the country have helped accomplish—the chance to fight back against metastatic breast cancer and get us closer to the day we find a cure.”
The Side-Out Foundation’s model is a cancer charity “game changer.” Unlike most organizations, money donated to Side-Out goes directly to its own innovative research at renowned medical institutions. These clinical trials are successfully slowing the progression of stage 4 breast cancer. A portion of the money raised through Side-Out also funds high-quality support services for cancer patients and their families. “I’m proud of what my team of impressive players has managed to accomplish, and excited for the impact that this year’s Dig Pink® events will have on the lives of women with stage 4 breast cancer,” Dunetz said. “The almost $12,000 raised here in Oakton was well-beyond our fundraising goal of $8,000. Because of the generosity of our community and many others across the country, we’re able to continue improving the way all cancers are treated, and for that I’d like to say thank you.”
ABOUT THE SIDE-OUT FOUNDATION
Founded in 2004, The Side-Out Foundation, founder of Dig Pink®, teams with the volleyball community to inspire science and hope in the match against breast cancer. In volleyball, “side-out” means regaining control of the ball. Similarly, The Side-Out Foundation helps people with breast cancer regain control of their lives. Side-Out is the only charity using the power and teamwork of the volleyball community to beat cancer and is directly responsible for extending the lives of stage 4 breast cancer patients. The treatments given as part of Side-Out’s innovative clinical trials have dramatically slowed the effects of stage 4 breast cancer, giving patients more quality time with their families and getting them closer to the day we find a cure. Through Dig Pink® and other programs, Side-Out coaches thousands of young people in skills such as teamwork, leadership and perseverance, and gives them opportunities to live meaningful and healthy lives.