Running, Biking, Swimming To Do A Mitzvah

Contributed by Audrey Matalon,

My parents taught me to do good deeds. A Rabbi taught me I should run to do the mitzvah. My experience is showing me there are some people who are doing more than run…

On May 6, 2012 I attended the Sharsheret Annual Benefit luncheon. Between the benefit chair Dr. Tammy Bryk and “Volunteer Tribute Award” winner Moe Rice, we were deeply moved and inspired with stories about courage, survival and love.

5000 women are getting diagnosed with breast cancer every year. 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer in our lifetime. That’s crazy. And very scarey because that means it will be someone you know, probably someone you love or maybe even you.

Sharsheret is a national organization supporting Jewish women and families facing breast cancer. Sharsheret means “chain” and it helps women and their families get linked into the Sharsheret community for support. Sharsheret removes the isolation and stigma that use to go along with major illness.

Sharsheret has many programs* such as:

Peer Support Network for women newly diagnosed or at high risk, with a 1-on-1 partner who’s in a similar circumstance.
Embrace for women living with advanced stage breast cancer.
Genetics for Life, addressing hereditary breast cancer and ovarian cancer.
Busy Box is for young parents facing breast cancer.
Family Focus is a resource for family and caregivers.
Ovarian Cancer Program offers resources for young Jewish women and their families facing ovarian cancer.
Sharsheret Supports creates support groups and programs:

And Sharsheret offers educational programs such as:

Health Care Symposia, for younger women with breast cancer;
Sharsheret On Campus, college student outreach;
Sharsheret Educational Resource Series, publications for Jewish women, families and health care professionals.

The Volunteer Tribute Award was given to Moe Rice who spoke about his mother who passed away of breast cancer and the role Sharsheret played in supporting him and his family. In return Moe initiated Sharsheret’s “Race With Us“. At this point the Race With Us team is more than 100 athletes strong, “athletes” of various levels of physical ability, breast cancer survivors, family and friends of survivors and others who are just moved by Sharsheret’s work.

My brother, Joel Matalon, is one of those people. Joel is participating with Team Sharsheret in the NYC/NJ Ironman this August 2012. The Ironman is an elite triathalon including three ordered events: a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike race and a 26.2 mile marathon. Joel and Team Sharsheret are training for this all day endurance event, which begins in early morning and participants must cross the finish line by midnight. Each Team participant has committed themselves in raising money for Sharsheret’s incredible programs. Would you be a sponsor? Any amount is valuable because it translates into a person, possibly someone you know, being helped.

The following is a personal letter from Joel. He writes:

I wanted to share with you what I’m up to with regards to Sharsheret and the Ironman US Championship on August 11, 2012 and request your tax-deductible sponsorship.

Tammy Bryk, a beloved client, friend and survivor, told me about Sharsheret, an organization supporting Jewish women and their families (of all backgrounds) facing breast cancer. This year Sharsheret offered coveted spots for the first ever 2012 Ironman US Championship NY/NJ race. Instead of securing my own slot I have chosen to join Team Sharsheret and make what I love to do more meaningful – RACING while raising money to help others. I listened to Tammy, a committed Sharsheret volunteer, because she is a constant inspiration to me. When I think of her energy and enthusiasm I am motivated to keep pushing even harder.

Over the past 16 years I’ve primarily raced outside of NY. I’ve done the 2010 Ironman in Canada, 2008 Ironman Kentucky, and 7 other triathlons. I’ve run 17 marathons in the United States, Canada,South America and Europe. I plan on competing in marathons in Detroit, Michigan, Hamburg, Germany, and Tiberia, Israel. I’m most interested in the Ironman US Championship NY/NJ so that my supporters can come out and watch me race and put Chi Running, the running method I teach around the world, to practice.

Please support me and Sharsheret by adopting at least a mile of the140.6 miles I will be swimming, biking and running. Help me reach my personal goal of $14,060 for Sharsheret’s programs and services, which they provide at no cost to thousands in need of support. Any and all donations are much appreciated and 100% tax deductible.

Thank you.

Please run to do this mitvah by clicking on the link above. If you’ve never heard the word mitvah before, it’s ok. It’s good to do “a good deed” in any language.

Thank you and may you and your loved ones be blessed with good health.

*Sharsheret programs are Trademarked/Registered


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