Despite raising almost $1 million, the Cancer Council has pulled the pin on the Corangamite Relay for Life saying that this weekend's event will be its last.
The Cancer Council's Relay For Life website said that it had "made the difficult decision" to not run the community event after 2019.
Its reasoning for the move was that it would "ensure that Cancer Council resources can be effectively put towards our vital work in cancer research, prevention and support".
Since the event began in 2010, the Corangamite relay has raised $914,000, which includes $14,000 which has already been banked ahead of this year's event.
Declining participation, fundraising rates and volunteer support were also cited as reasons for the event's demise.
The 2019 event was billed on the Relay for Life Corangamite event page as "the last for the foreseeable future".
Cancer Council media and public relations co-ordinator Gill Deed said the decision, made in conjunction with the Corangamite relay committee, came after the number of people taking part dropped from 874 to 314 between 2015 and 2018.
The amount raised each year had also fallen from $90,000 to just over $41,000.
So far 12 teams with 109 participants have registered for the two-day event at the Camperdown Recreation Reserve.
"Over the past three years, the Corangamite Relay has seen a decline in participation and fundraising," the website said. "We’ve also been struggling to recruit volunteer committee members to help plan the event, which makes organising the event too much work for the volunteers that we have.
"Cancer Council has made the difficult decision to not run this event after 2019 to ensure that Cancer Council resources can be effectively put towards our vital work in cancer research, prevention and support.
"Over its history, the Corangamite Relay has achieved so much. We’d love to bring everyone together to celebrate these achievements, and the wonderful impact the community has made on people affected by cancer," it said.
Relay for Life events are a chance for communities to recognise and celebrate those who have overcome cancer or are undergoing treatment, as well as the people who care for them. It also pays tribute to loved ones who have died from the disease.
The Corangamite relay begins on Saturday, February 23 at 5pm with an opening ceremony to celebrate and support cancer survivors and their carers. It's followed by a candlelight ceremony at 8.30pm where tributes are lit in honour of loved ones lost or in support of someone living with the disease.
Participants walk through the night with a closing ceremony to be held on Sunday at 11am with awards for the most spirited team and the one that raises the most money.
"Cancer Council would like to thank the Corangamite community for supporting Relay For Life and we hope that you can join us as we come together to give the event the amazing send-off it deserves,” the website said.
"We also want to assure you that Cancer Council will remain present in your community, continuing to deliver cancer information and support services to people impacted by cancer. Whether it is through local volunteer groups, support services, funding for clinical trials, or prevention programs, we’re here any time you need."
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