For the fifth year, MD Anderson supporters will strap on their boots — or other comfy footwear — and step out for the 2020 Boot Walk to End Cancer®. Due to COVID-19, walkers won’t gather at the Texas Medical Center campus on Nov. 7. Instead, participants will walk their own routes closer to home in this year’s virtual Boot Walk.
This year marks LyondellBasell’s fourth as the Boot Walk’s presenting sponsor. By helping offset event expenses, all funds raised by Boot Walk participants benefit research, prevention, education and patient programs at MD Anderson. This year, LyondellBasell is encouraging their global employee base to participate wherever they are.
“We all know someone — a loved one, a friend or an acquaintance — who has been affected by cancer, and LyondellBasell is proud to help support MD Anderson’s mission to eliminate this disease,” says Bob Patel, chief executive officer of LyondellBasell and a member of the MD Anderson Cancer Center Board of Visitors. “The Boot Walk is a way for all of us to honor those who have been impacted by cancer. This day is about more than just a walk; it's a journey we're taking together to help end cancer.”
Boot Walk sponsorship is just one piece of LyondellBasell’s long commitment to MD Anderson. Throughout the years, the company has been a major supporter of cancer control and prevention programs that help MD Anderson fulfill its mission of providing research-based community education. LyondellBasell also offers a matching gift program that increases the value of its employees’ donations to MD Anderson.
“On behalf of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, I want to thank LyondellBasell for returning as our presenting sponsor for this year’s Boot Walk to End Cancer,” says Peter WT Pisters, M.D., president. “All funds raised through this event support patient programs and breakthrough cancer research that has a global impact on improving the standard of care for cancer patients worldwide. LyondellBasell’s support, not only of the Boot Walk, but also of our Children’s Cancer Hospital and Careers in Cancer Science and Medicine programs, shows its commitment to Making Cancer History®.”
The company’s participation is inspiring to LyondellBasell employees who have faced cancer, says Bradd Bump, who turned to MD Anderson after a prostate cancer diagnosis in 2018.
“It not only reinforced my desire to participate in this event, but also made me proud to say I am an employee of a company that cares about their employees and the communities where they reside,” says Bump.
Virtual Boot Walk
The family-friendly, noncompetitive walk is the culmination of a fundraising program that encourages participants to tap into their social networks to raise money for MD Anderson’s bold mission: to eliminate cancer in Texas, the nation and the world. Since its inception in 2016, more than 23,000 people have participated, raising more than $6.8 million to support critical cancer research and programs at MD Anderson.
“We want to continue the Boot Walk in the safest way possible for our patients and their caregivers, employees and community supporters. We are asking participants to follow pandemic-related precautionary measures on Nov. 7,” says Pisters. “We remain grateful to those who join us in giving cancer the boot despite the unprecedented challenges of this global public health crisis.”
The virtual event opens participation to MD Anderson supporters all over the world, who are encouraged to stay connected with family, friends and cancer survivors taking part in the walk by sharing their virtual Boot Walk experiences online, on social media tagging MD Anderson and using the hashtag #EndCancer and through the Boot Walk app. Registered participants have access to weekly webinars, fundraising incentives and challenges leading up to event day.
“This year we will be walking along the San Bernard River near our home instead of in the Texas Medical Center,” says Bump. “Though we won’t be surrounded by thousands of other people looking to give cancer the boot, I know we’ll find strength in knowing people around the country are walking with us wherever they are.”