How To Donate

Why I choose the Cameron Neely Foundation for Cancer Care…

While coping with cancer, my parents, Kevin and Carmela Tarpey, were fortunate that they had exceptional care at Tufts Medical Center and were surrounded by a wonderful support system at home. However, not everyone suffering with cancer has the benefits of these two things. Therefore, it was important for me to raise money for a charity that focused some of their efforts on providing care for cancer patients. However, having witnessed first-hand the horrible side effects of radiation and chemotherapy, it was essential that my chosen organization also focus on innovative research and promoting alternative treatment methods.The Cameron Neely Foundation for Cancer Care is a cancer charity that met those criteria in impressive fashion. Founded in 1995 by former Boston Bruins hockey player, Cam Neely and his family in honor of their parents who passed away from cancer, it is a support driven non-profit organization sustained by donations. The Neely Foundation helps cancer patients in a plethora of ways, however, there are two aspects of the organization that I find especially inspiring. The Neely House is a bed and breakfast style treatment center for cancer patients and their families that is located in the Tufts Medical Center. Since opening in 1997, the Neely House has served over 5000 families, primarily from New England. Meanwhile, the Neely Center for Clinical Cancer Research seeks to give patients more rapid access to new cancer studies and treatments. Thus, they provide patients with successful alternative therapies while avoiding the stress involved with long waiting periods. There are many more wonderful things happening through the Neely Foundation and I encourage you to check out the organization’s website ( before donating.

How do the donations work?

There’s two different styles of donation: pledge per mile vs. lump sum. However, there is only one method of donation: using a credit card at the fundraising page I set up at First, here are explanations of the two styles of donations, followed by instructions on how to donate.

(Please note: Do not send any checks or money to me personally. I chose to use to handle the fundraising because it would be nearly impossible for me to deal with it on my own while hiking the trail. Crowdrise charges a lower fee than most other sites for each transaction (3%) and works with literally thousands of charities. If you don’t have a credit card or are unable to donate online for whatever reason, I apologize.)

a.) Pledge-per-mile: When I initially conceived my idea of thru-hiking the AT and raising funds for a cancer charity, I was inspired by the “pledge-per-mile” fundraising campaigns that seemed to be popular in my youth. Basically, the person asking for donations would be either running a marathon or attempting a high mileage walk. Donors would pledge to pay a certain amount of money for each mile of the race or walk that the person completed. In my case, I’m attempting to walk the 2, 189 mile Appalachian Trail so it makes this style of donating even more enticing. Let’s say you don’t think old Kevvy boy here will make it the whole way. Perhaps you think I’ll be calling Maine Search and Rescue to come save me three days in. Then put your money where your mouth is! Or maybe, on the other hand, you have absolute faith that I’ll make it all the way down to Springer Mountain in Georgia. In your case, your pledge is more like an affirmation because you know you’ll be paying the full amount in a few months. Let’s take a look at two examples to see how this “pledge-per-mile” works:

Example A.) Negative Nolan thinks there’s no way Kevin will hike the whole Appalachian Trail. Heck, he’d be surprised if Kevin was able to hike a quarter of it! So Negative Nolan decides to pledge a dime for each mile Kevin hikes. Negative Nolan follows Kevin’s progress on his blog waiting for him to concede defeat. Sure enough, in mid August, Kevin says he is quitting the hike after walking just 403 miles. Therefore, Negative Nolan goes on Kevin’s page on Crowdrise and donates $40.30 to the Cameron Neely Foundation ($0.10 pledge x 403 miles completed)

Example B.) Optimistic Otis is excited for Kevin’s thru-hike attempt. Although it will be an arduous journey, he believes Kevin will be successful. Therefore, Optimistic Otis pledges a dollar and 50 cents. Over the course of the next few months, he eagerly reads each of Kevin’s posts and leaves comments cheering him on. In early December when Kevin summits Springer Mountain, Optimistic Otis donates $3,283.50 to the Cameron Neely Foundation via Kevin’s fundraising page on Crowdrise ($1.50 pledge X 2189 miles completed)

Important Note: One key difference between my fundraising campaign and the “pledge-per-mile” campaigns of my youth, I am not asking people to write down their pledge amount before I begin my hike. Quite frankly, as I prepare for this trek, I’m just too busy to chase people down and keep a record of what they pledge. So, if you’re thinking of pledging per mile, the onus is on you to go on my fundraising page after I’m finished with my hike and donate the amount you had planned. Just as so often happens in many of the rural areas the AT crosses, we’re using the honor system here.

b.) Lump Sum: Perhaps you don’t like “pledge-per-mile” campaigns due to having suffered a traumatic injury while participating in the Buxton Butt-Crawl for Bulimia back in ‘97. Maybe you’re not good at math and don’t feel like having to bust out the calculator. Or you’d just like to donate up front and follow Kevin’s blog anyways. If so, this is the donation method for you. To donate, just follow the instructions below…

How to Donate:

  1. Visit
  2. Click the “Donate” button
  3. Choose the dollar amount you which to donate.
  4. Decide whether you’d like your donation to be anonymous or not.
  5. Write a few words if you’d like in the comments section
  6. Click “Donate” button again
  7. Add your billing information
  8. Add your payment information
  9. Under “Confirm Your Donation” click on the text, “Optional Crowdfund Fee” This is an optional fee, so you may select the 0% option.

The Ginger Beard Man and Melben thank you for your support!

3 Comments on “How To Donate

  1. Pingback: The Green Hoof (For Greenhorns) | The Green Hoof

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