- 22 July 2013
- by Hasib Muhammad
When I visit the park, I see many people biking with their friends and families. It is no surprise that biking is a popular activity, but who knew that it could do social good? Meet Janelle Hayden, a biking and volunteerism enthusiast. She is the volunteer coordinator of Pedal The Cause, which is an organization that brings both of her passions together.
Pedal The Cause was founded by Bill Koman in 2009. It was founded in St. Louis, Missouri, but another ride is opening up in San Diego, California. The premise of Pedal The Cause is simple: Bikers pedal through cities in support of cancer research, each mile brings them closer to finding a cure for cancer. To Janelle and Bill, this ride means so much more.
Bill himself is a two-time lymphoma survivor, so the cause is very near and dear to him. Cancer research is important to Janelle because she has "seen what families go through. The struggles and strain that this illness puts on a family." And while cancer is a terrible misfortune, Janelle has seen how cancer unites communities under a single cause. Janelle is "in this to help all those families to do whatever it takes to, one day soon, have a world without cancer."
Janelle credits the enormous success of Pedal The Cause to those who organize the event, especially the staff. "It is a full time staff of 4, and they work like an army," Janelle says. Each of the staff members puts so much heart and soul into Pedal The Cause. There are very few that can say that they have not been affected by cancer in any way. Nevertheless, Janelle is amazed by all of the volunteers of Pedal The Cause, from the behind-the-scenes workers to the race day volunteers!
Not surprisingly, Pedal The Cause is the most successful cancer fundraising organization in St. Louis! The event has seen tremendous support from the corporate community and local families. Over the past three years, the race has donated 100% of its proceeds, over 4.2 million dollars, to research hospitals! What starts off as a race by people who love biking, turns out to be bikers helping others who can’t bike because of cancer.
If you live in the St. Louis or San Diego area, there are so many ways to volunteer with Pedal The Cause! You can help assemble rider bags in September or cheer the riders on during race day - it's all up to you! Visit the website for more information, and don't be surprised to see Pedal The Cause breaking records come race day!