In November of 2006, Brenda Smith decided one of her 2007 New Year resolutions was to do more for others; something that really made a difference. Her mission was to get involved in helping to find a cure for breast cancer, but also to get as many people as she knew involved as well.
Brenda chose this cause because her aunt died of breast cancer at the very young age of 49. Also, at 36 years old, Brenda had a personal scare with breast cancer and she also knew so many others that had been affected by this awful disease in some way.
Brenda and her sister-in-law Tracy decided to do the AVON Walk for Breast Cancer in May of 2007. After walking 39 miles in two days and raising close to $18,000, from that moment forward she was moved to raise as much money as she could towards the fight against breast cancer.
During this first year, many of her family and friends offered hours of their time to help raise the $18,000. It was at that time the, “New England Walkers for Knockers (NE-W4K)” was formed. The NE-W4K Team started as a group of individuals from the ages of 11-68, both female and male, who simply wanted to help someone they loved with her passion.
In the midst of it all, many of our volunteers have become as passionate as Brenda has for the cause; as well as other causes. Everyone on the team has people in their lives affected by breast cancer in one way or another. Over the last several years, NE-W4K has grown with many individuals we have met along this phenomenal journey. We are very proud of every member of “our team.”
Since 2006, NE-W4K has raised over $220,000 towards the fight against breast cancer. Up through 2010, those funds were donated to the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. However, it was at that time the mission of NE-W4K slightly changed. Moving forward, there was a new path for the NE-W4K group, aimed at helping on a more local and personal basis to support those faced with the emotional and financial burdens associated with the struggle to overcome breast cancer. We decided instead of helping find a cure, we wanted to provide help and hope!
Finding a cure for breast cancer is obviously very crucial. However, people who are fighting breast cancer deserve and require a good quality of life while they are fighting to survive. It is a proven fact that in order to get healthy, you must have good quality of life, both physical and emotional. Many of the individuals fighting breast cancer have financial struggles and require emotional support on a daily basis; and this is where our focus has turned.
Since 2012 NE-W4K has donated 100% of the funds raised from the “Ride for Help and Hope” to a local non-profit called My Breast Cancer Support (MBCS); formerly breastcancerstories.org. Up through 2019, over $132,000.00 has been donated! The Mission of My Breast Cancer Support is to deliver tangible, practical and emotional support to breast cancer patients of the greater seacoast area on their individual paths to wellness and healing. For more information on MBCS, please visit them at: www.mybreastcancersupport.org.
Over the last few years, we have seen many of our friends and family go off and do amazing deeds for other causes they believe in. This is very exciting for us as our goal has also been to motivate and inspire others to help others. “Paying it Forward” has become a very familiar saying in this day and age and NE-W4K is all about Paying it Forward.
NE-W4K is NOT a 501c3. The funds we collect are directly payable to the organizations that benefit from our events. We simply organize the events and donate the funds.
Up to this point, NE-W4K has always donated at least 97% of the funds we have raised and we work hard at getting the majority of our event expenses donated. Also, many of the services provided at our events are volunteered at no charge. We will continue to strive to accomplish this every year.
NE-W4K is very grateful for the support we have received over the last several years from our friends, sponsors and supporters. We are committed to helping in any way we can to make sure those that want to help others have our support too!
If you can help NE-W4K as a sponsor to our events, or, if you are interested in helping at the Ride for Help and Hope, please email Brenda Smith
Thank you, NE-W4K
Brenda Smith / Founder of New England Walkers for Knockers (NE-W4K)