Relay for Life team leader sees anything with value as a terrible thing to waste in fighting cancer

By JoEllen Black, Publisher

Relayers, meaning those on Relay for Life teams, are known for their non-stop fundraising to aid in research to eradicate cancer. Donna Shane is no different.
“I relay 24/7 and fundraise all year. My dad had cancer and the American Cancer Society was a huge help to my mom in supplying a wheelchair and bed,” Shane, 32-year resident of Richmond, said.
Her dad, Edward Kolster, lost his battle with prostate cancer; and eight years ago, her brother Ed died of brain cancer. Shane also lost grandparents and uncles to cancer.
Her relay team, Kolster family and friends, is named in their honor.
Shane and her team do the typical fundraisers, like bake sales, but they have found a niche in the junk business.
“As a team, we save Best Choice can labels and send it in once a year,” Shane said, which brings around $90 for 2,000 labels.
The team’s “trash to treasure” approach also partners with Phoneraiser (, which pays for old cellphones and ink jet cartridges to non-profit groups. They also save grocery receipts, like many area schools do, from Richmond Apple Market and Dave’s Country Mart in Lexington.
“It’s not big bucks, but we get some money,” Shane said.
Now that Kolster is retired from DFS in Lexington, she says she has even more time to pick through trash. Her team’s new endeavor is collecting materials for Terracycle ( The company recycles and “upcycles” (reusing materials in its original condition) to make park benches, pencils, totes, garden pots and other items. Capri Sun juice boxes are converted to totes and backpacks. Lays potato chip sacks and candy wrappers (like M&Ms) are repurposed into items, like picture frames. According to its Web site, over 1,500 different products have been made from waste and are available at retailers like Target, Walmart and Whole Foods Market.
Shane has three drop-off locations in Richmond – Dear Elementary, Larry’s True Value and Shirkey Nursing and Rehabilitation – for those who would like to participate.
For more information, contact Shane at 816-739-0346.
“We do these things for the survivors,” Shane said. “It keeps relay going. I pay it back and forward for them and for myself. I’ll probably be diagnosed with it, too,” she said.

Click here for our E-edition and read the rest of the story.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login