05/06/04 — First Hispanic team enters Wayne Relay

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First Hispanic team enters Wayne Relay

By Becky Barclay
Published in News on May 6, 2004 1:59 PM

Not only will Mission Foods have its first team in this year's Relay for Life, but it will also have the first Hispanic team in the event.

Cora Bond, team member, said there are anywhere from 27 to 30 members, and most of them are Hispanic workers with the company. Catharine Graham is the team captain.

"We let one person from each shift head up that shift to get it pulling and participating," said Ms. Bond. "It's really made everybody a lot closer."

Mission Foods workers bought and put up stars on a Relay for Life wall at the business.

They held a variety of fund-raisers including bake sales, drawings and chicken dinner sales with chickens donated and cooked by Case Farms.

They also sold luminarias and purple bows. And they made trinket boxes and sold them.

Ms. Bond said she was impressed with the fund-raisers. "For the bake sales, they even made strawberry shortcakes and apple cakes and put them in restaurant containers to sell. It was very professional."

Mission Foods has raised over $4,000 so far and plans to raise more before the Relay is over.

"We're all excited that we've gotten to that point," Ms. Bond said. "We've had 100 percent participation from everyone in the plant."

She said one woman worked all day, stayed up all night making tamales to sell the following day at the plant, then after delivering them, went home and made more.

Although a sales representative and a spouse of one of the plant workers are cancer survivors, Mission Foods is participating in the Relay for Life mainly to raise money for a good cause, according to Ms. Bond.

"Catharine came up with the idea of having a team, and it just evolved from there," she said.

Ms. Bond won't say what the team's campsite will be, but she said it will definitely have a Mexican theme, and team members will sell tacos during the Relay.

"I think the event will be fun for us," said Julie Ellison, team member. "We've got a good group of people here. And we'll continue to participate in the Relay for Life in the future."

This year's Relay will be held May 14 and 15 at Eastern Wayne High School.