Published September 17, 2013
Volume 21, Number 9

Sandra J. Wing Healing Therapies Foundation Adds Golf Tournament to Fundraising Repertoire

The Sandra J. Wing Healing Therapies Foundation has a well-earned reputation for creative fundraisers. Just look at some of the entries in its current Party Palooza line-up: a Wine Bottling and Tasting party, a Sip and Paint art class, a Soups of the World smorgasbord dinner. Not to mention the inventively themed Annual Ragin' Cajun party, typically held in the spring.

To this repertoire has been added another fun-filled event that reaches out to a different, sports-minded audience. The First Annual SWing for Cancer Therapies Golf Event will take place on Thursday, October 24, at Castlewood Country Club’s scenic Hill Course.

The challenging course—opened in 1926, it starts off just below Pleasanton Ridge and winds around the hillside to offer panoramic views of the valley—is always a major draw, but this inaugural tournament has a special, more personal dimension: the participation of Piper Wagner, Castlewood LPGA Golf Professional. Wagner herself is a beneficiary of the foundation’s grant program, which was established in 2009 to help alleviate the uncomfortable and unsettling side effects of cancer treatment.

As its name suggests, the nonprofit provides funding that allows Tri-Valley patients to access healing therapies such as acupuncture, acupressure, therapeutic massage, guided imagery, and deep-breathing meditation while they are undergoing radiation or chemotherapy.

“Ours is a very local effort,” observes SWing Committee chair and foundation board member Dave Rekart. With strong ties to the area as a Pleasanton business owner, Rekart especially appreciates the positive impact the grants have on residents of the immediate community. “We are here to help patients today, and the results are very tangible. We see our beneficiaries everywhere, It’s great to know that what we are doing is helping right here in our neighborhoods.”

Testimonials from more than 350 grant recipients confirm the powerful contribution the therapies make to their overall well-being as they fight the disease.

“The medical community is very involved in what we do,” adds Gracie Santos, the nonprofit’s volunteer chair. “We often hear that the therapies we support not only help patients stay the course but also help improve treatment outcomes.  These techniques help keep the mind strong, which is so important in the battle with cancer.”

Rekart also commends the organization for its minimal overhead, thanks to a strong network of volunteers. Its Board of Directors and Stakeholder Action Committee include Pleasanton City Manager Nelson Fialho, retired Mayor Jennifer Hosterman, and a local oncology specialist, as well as other local business professionals.

As many as 100 golfers are expected at the SWing tournament, which gets off to a shotgun start at noon and culminates with hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, and awards at 5 p.m. For registration details, go to sjwhtf.golfreg.com.

This year’s Party Palooza, a series of nine mini-events hosted by friends of the foundation, got underway on August 2. Remaining events are the Passage to India Festivals Night and Celebrate Your Power to Heal, both on September 21; the Bunco Party on September 26; and Soups of the World - All Stars on October 12. Visit healingtherapiesfoundation.org/palooza to buy tickets.

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