BUTLER – Butler County Community College, whose students, staff and guests have raised nearly $20,000 to benefit breast cancer research since 2010, is hosting the sale of pink ribbons and the collection of financial donations this month to assist a nonprofit organization that raises awareness and funds for the treatment of the disease.

BC3’s social awareness club is directing BC3’s 2020 Project Pink during breast cancer awareness month. Proceeds will benefit the Side-Out Foundation, a Virginia charity that raises funds through mainly volleyball-related events.

Since BC3’s volleyball program held its first Dig Pink game in 2010, members of the BC3 community have raised $19,119 for the Side-Out Foundation, including a single-year high of $3,200 in 2019.

“It’s been amazing,” said Melissa Philson, a BC3 assistant professor. “I honestly can’t believe the amount of the donations.”

Added Dr. Karen Stubenbort, a BC3 associate professor: “I think it is a statement of how generous the BC3 community is.”

Philson and Stubenbort are co-advisers of BC3’s 25-member social awareness club and members of BC3’s Project Pink committee. Philson is a breast cancer survivor. Stubenbort’s mother, sister, aunt and two cousins had breast cancer.

“Given the various types of breast cancer, the more research money we have, the better off we are,” Stubenbort said.

About 250,000 women and men in the United States are diagnosed with the disease each year, according to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. More than 40,000 Americans die from the disease annually.

BC3’s Project Pink will continue through Oct. 31.

Ribbons cost $1 and will likely be placed in BC3’s Student Success Center, Stubenbort said. Ribbons can be purchased from BC3’s social awareness club by contacting Stubenbort at karen.stubenbort@bc3.edu or Philson at melissa.philson@bc3.edu.

Plastic pink donation buckets are located in BC3’s Bookstore within the Student Success Center and in Logan Cafe within the Heaton Family Learning Commons on BC3’s main campus in Butler Township.

Those unable to visit BC3’s main campus to purchase a ribbon or to place a donation, or students, staff and guests of BC3’s additional locations in Armstrong, Butler, Jefferson, Lawrence and Mercer counties, can donate to BC3’s Project Pink at https://giving.side-out.org/campaigns/16946.

Those visiting the site can click on the pink “Donate” button and identify the amount of the donation. Donors are also asked to check the box covering the processing fee so that 100 percent of the gift will benefit the Side-Out Foundation.

BC3’s breast cancer awareness month activities had been organized by BC3’s volleyball program and the college’s Student Life office since 2010.