When New York Times bestselling author Cherry Adair joins forces with two southern authors to raise money for a worthy cause, expect world class results. Tina De Salvo and Stella Barcelona may have less experience on the page than Adair, but the trio stands completely level on enthusiasm.
The recent RTBooklovers Convention in New Orleans provided an opportunity for the three friends to present their cause, the fight against breast cancer, to more than 2000 writers, publishers, editors, readers and other attendees. Under the banner of “Friends Fight Together,” the three held a fundraiser during the convention. Part one consisted of photo opportunities with romance novel cover models for a donation.
The second part consisted of three days’ worth of a mega-raffle. Three eight-foot-long tables, each covered with donations, tempted attendees to purchase one or more raffle tickets. What began with three small pirogues filled with a few gift items grew into designer handbags, electronic devices, food, jewelry and a total value of more than $4000 per prize, as donors rallied to the cause.
De Salvo knows firsthand the kinds of impact that breast cancers has on a victim. She’s been through the whole spectrum of the disease, from discovery of the lump in June 2008 to lumpectomy and eventual double mastectomy and reconstruction, as well as the chemotherapy and radiation treatments along the way. She had the supportive relationships with her cousin Barcelona and mentor Adair to help her on the road. De Salvo recounts the experience in a podcast interview with New Orleans news anchor Angela Hill.
Now the three of them seek to help others in the same difficult situation.
“We are still working out the details and figures...but we raised $10,001 at RT! Very wonderful and generous attendees!” reports De Salvo. The funds will go to the Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center, the selected beneficiary of this particular fundraiser, to help with the unmet needs of breast cancer victims. She describes these needs as such basics as gas to drive to chemo treatments and aid with the purchase of prosthetic devices-or lymphatic sleeves, or other items that insurance may not cover.
Three lovely ladies with hearts filled with compassion have created a partnership that will impact lives for years to come and inspire others to join the “Friends Fight Together” team. And that’s the best love story of all.
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