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Rods & Hogs Poker Run

June 13, 2009


In Remembrance
Simone Eichenberger
Cathy Salerno

Event Images
Rods & Hogs 2008



What began as a simple idea to reach out to raise awareness, the Ovarian Cancer Orange County Alliance (OCOCA) has had extraordinary successes since it’s beginnings in 2003.  With a small core group of 8 women, OCOCA participated in 29 community events in and around Orange County, California. As September is designated as Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, OCOCA was busy distributing ‘ comfort gifts’ to 144 women in treatment. Educational materials were distributed to over 3,450 people, just in September and a total outreach providing information to 7,800 community members.


In 2004, OCOCA more than doubled their efforts to raise awareness by providing free information to groups and organizations at 43 community events. Again, during Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, OCOCA reached out to 8,000 people by placing baskets of symptom cards throughout the county and providing 300 ‘comfort gifts’ to women in treatment.  Between community events and women in treatment, we touched more than 18,500 people.  A Speakers Bureau using a PowerPoint presentation was created and made available free of charge to organizations and groups seeking educational information.


Additionally, in 2004 OCOCA launched a Medical School Program at UCI supported by the Speakers Bureau. This unique program is part of the third year medical school's curriculum. The students have an opportunity to dialogue with survivors, women in treatment and caregivers to provide a personal viewpoint.  This program has received nationwide recognition and continues to be offered at other universities, as well.


2005 has been another year of progress for us at OCOCA. After many hours of planning and designing, our web site was launched on September 1st. We also started a Media/PR committee, which has enabled us to publish articles highlighting our efforts and events in various Newspapers and Magazines. We participated in over 45 community events throughout the year, always reaching out to educate and raise awareness of Ovarian Cancer. In September, Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, we once again distributed comfort bags to women in treatment and placed 110 baskets of symptom cards all throughout the county, reaching over 30,000 with our efforts. Our Speakers Bureau has continued with the “Survivors teaching Students, Saving Women’s Lives” program at UCI, and has expanded into the community with various other speaking engagements. To support all of our efforts and accomplishments, OCOCA hosted three very successful fundraisers.


Time flew by in 2006 as we continued our established education and awareness programs. Once again, we increased the number of people reached during September’s Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month to a record 50,000, in addition to the readership of the Orange County Register with our newspaper coverage. Our outreach also included providing ovarian cancer information to the Orange County Libraries, as well as supplying 300 “Comfort Bags” to women in treatment. Our “Season of Excitement” Luncheon and Fashion Show proved to be our most successful Fundraiser yet.


We expect continued growth and expansion for the Alliance in 2007. With the recent training of new volunteers, two large fundraisers scheduled and dozens of community events planned, OCOCA will continue to increase awareness of ovarian cancer throughout Orange County.


From very humble beginnings, Ovarian Cancer Orange County Alliance has worked tirelessly to raise a voice to bring awareness about ovarian cancer.  OCOCA is there for you!

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