Campus & Community

Cancer Society’s daffodils can drive away winter blues

2 min read

With months until spring’s anticipated return comes a beacon of yellow hope. Daffodils are an invigorating component in the American Cancer Society’s (ACS) efforts, and Harvard is again a key participant in Daffodil Days, the ACS’s annual flowery fight to help patients and eradicate cancer.

Beginning this month, Harvard celebrates its 22nd year participating in the Daffodil Days fundraiser, having contributed more than $528,000 since the event’s inception in 1988. Faculty, staff, and students can order a $10 bouquet of 10 flowers, three potted multi-stem bulbs for $15, or purchase a bouquet and collectable Boyds Bear for $25. The last day to purchase items is Feb. 27.

The daffodils will be delivered via University Mail Services on March 16 to five local hospitals: Cambridge, Mount Auburn, and Youville hospitals; the Sancta Maria Nursing Facility; and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Daffodil Days at Harvard attributes its success to the prior leadership of Rita Corkery, former associate director of Community Affairs, who began Daffodil Days at Harvard in 1988 and was a survivor of breast cancer, and more recently, Carole Lee, a former department administrator for Government, Community and Public Affairs, who retired in 2002. Both women helped jump start the program and brought it to the success that it is today.

Last year’s contribution reached more than $53,000 — a generous growth spurt compared to 1988’s inaugural tally of $2,500. ACS honored Harvard as the top university seller in 2008, which is also the first year Harvard surpassed the $50,000 mark.

Top sellers for 2008 included Maura Kelley from the Law School ($4,655), Peter Conlin from the Development Office ($4,155), and Martha Foley from the Kennedy School ($2,675).

To locate your departmental coordinator or to volunteer, contact Julie Russell in the Office of Government and Community Affairs at (617) 495-4955 or