Relay for Life could be delayed if more numbers do not sign up

RELAY: Melva Blumson cuts the ribbon to start the 2018 Ceduna Relay for Life. Organisers are hoping for more registrations in the upcoming weeks for the 2020 event. Picture: Andrew Brooks
RELAY: Melva Blumson cuts the ribbon to start the 2018 Ceduna Relay for Life. Organisers are hoping for more registrations in the upcoming weeks for the 2020 event. Picture: Andrew Brooks

Organisers of the Ceduna Relay for Life event are concerned that low numbers may force the postponement of the 2020 event.

The relay is hosted biennially, with the most recent staging in 2018 including 180 registered participants across 13 teams, raising more than $31,000 for Cancer Council SA.

Only three teams have registered for the 2020 event, which is set to take place on March 28 and 29 at the Ceduna Sports Club.

Event lead Rhian Ashton said they were hoping for greater community interest.

"We are lacking community interest in the event and team registrations - we are only four months out from the relay and asking people to register," she said.

"We need enough teams before we make a decision on the event.

"By this time for the 2018 event we had about 10 teams already registered."

She said there was a concern that of the registered teams they had numbers of between three and seven people, when most teams would usually have between 10 and 12 people.

"It is a bit concerning that we are lacking numbers at the moment," Ms Ashton said.

"I know it has been a rough farming year and people have been busy, but Christmas is coming up and we want people to get on board to fundraise before the event."

Should the event not happen in 2020, organisers will look to postpone it for 12 months.

"It has been ongoing for quite a number of years and while we won't cancel it completely, we may have to postpone it for 12 months," Ms Ashton said.

"We have had lots of success in previous years raising a lot of money and while it's not all about the money, we pride ourselves in raising money for our community.

"Everything else is organised, we just need teams - we have had low team numbers in the past and the atmosphere just isn't there without the numbers."

She said there had been discussions with the Cancer Council about exploring other avenues, such as having a shorter relay so children could be involved and not have to be out overnight.

The money raised by Relay for Life helps the Cancer Council run services such as its lodge in Adelaide, which Ms Ashton said was utilised by people from the region.

Organisers are also hoping for more people to assist the committee, even if it was to complete small tasks.

"We have a number of older members looking to move off the committee, and the few younger ones all work and have kids," she said.

"We are doing our best, but any extra help would be greatly appreciated - it doesn't have to be a full position, but perhaps doing odd jobs and helping to set up on the day, and we only hold meetings once a month."

To get involved with Ceduna's Relay for Life, head to the Facebook page or visit the Relay for Life website, where you can create a team or join an established team.

For more event details, or to join the committee, call Rhian Ashton on 0427 624 534 or teams coordinator Amber Drummond on 0429 706 043.