Constellium recently donated $7,500 to the American Cancer Society (ACS) to help with the organization’s efforts to fund cancer research.

Constellium Ravenswood CEO Buddy Stemple said the donation is the result of a plant-wide effort to help in the fight against cancer.

A few years ago, the Constellium Cares group came up with the idea to “Paint the Plant Pink” each year to raise money for the ACS and cancer research. The effort started during October, which is breast cancer awareness month, and spring-boarded into raising funds to battle the disease in all its forms.

“These ladies came up with a great idea a few years ago to paint the plant pink. So every year we find different ways to turn the plant pink. We do a lot of activities to raise money. It’s a time of the year everyone looks forward to,” Stemple said.

“If you look at the number of us here that have been affected some way in our lives by cancer, it’s a staggering number. This is just our way of giving back – hopefully making a small contribution toward finding a cure,” Stemple said.

Lori McKee is planning systems administrator and Pink Initiative Lead at Constellium. She said the plant’s efforts to raise money for the ACS have grown each year.

“We raised about $3,500 in one month the first year we did it. We upped that to a little over $5,000 the second year. This past October we hit over $7,500,” she said.

“We’re so lucky that we have the corporation behind us and we have the rest of the workforce behind us because we couldn’t do this without them,” McKee said.

Holley Durham, community manager for ACS, said the donation will assist the ACS with promoting cancer research and its “mission programs” conducted throughout the year. Relay for Life also is a major fundraiser for the ACS, she said.

The ACS is hosting the 2019 Relay for Life of Jackson County from 4 p.m. to midnight today (May 31) at Washington’s Riverfront Park in Ravenswood.

“Relay for Life is not just funded for one particular type of cancer. It’s for all cancers. So it’s very beneficial for people to get involved with the American Cancer Society and Relay for Life so that they can support all different types of cancer research,” Durham said.

In addition to donations like the one recently, Constellium has a very large presence at Relay for Life each year.

“Constellium has been involved for many years. They are our top fundraising team here in jackson County. “They not only do fundraising activities but they create awareness to all their staff and employees about ways to prevent cancer.”