Madison Moms are Thinking Pink
Tuesday, October 9, 2012 • 6:30am
MADISON, NJ - Think pink! That’s what Gretchen Coviello advocates through her campaign to raise awareness for breast cancer called Tie One On 2012.
Tie One On, founded by a group of friends, has one goal: to raise money to show support and promote awareness for breast cancer. The campaign’s enthusiasm has been catching on sense it began about eight years ago and it will not stop anytime soon.
“Every year it's different, it has taken on a really neat life of its own,” said Coviello in describing the campaign's mission. As for the ribbons decorating Waverly Place in Madison she said, “it's great to see the ribbons driving through town, people showing support for friends.”
The ambition to join the fight against breast cancer through Tie One On all started when two friends of the group of eight were diagnosed. One Grace Lami, beat the disease; the other, Chrisine Massaro, passed away.
Massaro died in March of 2011 when the cancer had spread to her liver.
“It is our little piece of Madison, Christine, the kids,” said Coviello. “It’s a great small town, it brings out the best in everyone, it's emotional and very cool how people jump on it and want to do something.”
Coviello was inspired by her tradition of tying a ribbon to the back of her car regardless of the holiday. In thinking of ideas to support breast cancer awareness, she implemented the ribbon concept and it took off from there.
“We raised about $700 in the first year,” said Coviello, “and we said ‘Oh, this is cool,’ but we wanted to do more.”
In 2010, they participated in Bottle Hill Day, Madison’s annual downtown celebration. In 2011, Coviello set the goal to raise $10,000 and succeeded. Over the years, she and the group have raised over $20,000. At this year’s Bottle Hill Day alone, the group raised $3,000.
“It was a great day, we had a great turnout,” said Coviello, “it was very exciting.”
This year’s theme is “Join the Fight." Therefore, pink camouflage is their symbol for 2012. The design is available on shoelaces, hair accessories and even a fob to adorn on a backpack.
Coviello says that she wants to keep working. She knows that people look forward to it.
Local Madison teams have been sporting their pink during games. This year, every team from flag football team (the town's Junior Recreational teams), to varsity high school teams wear the laces. Football isn’t the only sport that supports the cause: field hockey, local soccer and travel soccer all wear them, as well.
This brings the amount of people wearing laces and showing support to over 570. Coviello said she just recently placed an order for $1,000 worth of laces.
The most humbling part of the experience for Coviello is when she sees the people taking their time to support the cause.
“Kids buy t-shirts, laces, socks, ribbon,” said Coviello, “then they want it because their friend buys it, everyone from first grade to seniors in high school.”
The campaign has opened everyone’s hearts to a cause that Coviello is grateful to be a part of, and it started out small. She said that first it began with door-to-door fundraising in which they asked for donations of $10 to tie a pink ribbon on the person's doorknob.
All profits from the campaign are donated to Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
Coviello and the other founding members of the group: Andrea Waresk, Diane Horn, Susanne Voneerlinde, Grace Lami, Anita McAndrew, Karen Blount, and Chris Anderson, encourage awareness. Mammograms are important. Coviello says the friendships that develop from supporting a cause are heartwarming and the connection is real.
The Tie One On team wants everyone to spread awareness, tell a friend and donate if they can. For more information on Tie One On or to get involved with ribbons or other ways to support, contact Gretchen Coviello by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, visit www.passionatelypink.org for information about Susan G. Komen and Passionately Pink for the Cure.