Fundraising Focus
Crushing Cancer as a Company

By The Pelotonia Team|April 23, 2021

Are you thinking about ways for your company to get more involved in Pelotonia this year? Today, we’re providing some inspiration from our friends at Ohio Capital Corporation for Housing (OCCH), a nonprofit that leverages private capital for the construction, rehabilitation, and preservation of affordable housing.
In a typical year, around 5-10 people at OCCH participate in Pelotonia in some way through Team Huntington. However, in 2020, 24 people in the company got involved and raised $33,000, all while having fun and feeling inspired throughout the process!
This was thanks in large part to Kip Lewis, director of construction management, and 4 other OCCH employees who set up a company-wide challenge for people to participate in Pelotonia by creating their own activity goals. In 2020, this was called “My Pelotonia,” which has now evolved into the Challenger participation type. The OCCH team dedicated this challenge in memory of their beloved receptionist, Shirlene Smith, who passed away from colon cancer.
Shirlene Smith at her desk
“The sell to start this challenge wasn’t hard at all,” Kip says. “Everyone knew Shirlene and wanted to do something in her memory. She was just an awesome person.”
Here are some of the activities people completed to inspire their networks to raise money for cancer research:
  • Wrote cards to cancer patients at The James
  • Donated makeup to a local women’s shelter
  • Completed acts of kindness
  • Taught a virtual course for vets with PTSD
  • Set cycling goals
  • And more!
The participants started with an objective to raise $12,000 for cancer research. And they soon blew that goal out of the water! People reached out to family and friends, hosted bake sales, and OCCH provided matching donations as well to finally reach that final $33,000 total. Kip kept a tracking sheet to see how everyone was doing with their goals. During staff meetings each Monday, the team would check in to see how everyone was doing. It was a great way to feel more connected as a team and receive updates.
OCCH Team Members at previous Ride Weekends
“The energy was high,” Kip recalls. “Keeping people motivated wasn’t hard. Everyone had a lot of fun completing their unique goals.”
OCCH’s corporate challenge even had its own logo: a string of pearls, which was Shirlene’s trademark. The company created tumblers with the challenge’s logo on the front as a memento and gifted them to participants. Now, whenever someone looks at the tumbler sitting on their desk, they can be reminded of Shirlene and of Pelotonia’s mission, to accelerate funding for innovative cancer research.
Kip says, “This challenge was for everybody. Everyone chose something they enjoyed, and they did it for a larger purpose.”
We can't wait to see all that OCCH accomplishes this year for Pelotonia 2021!

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100% of participant-raised funds go to innovative cancer research.

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