Having personally lost a friend to breast cancer, Port Washington High School Volleyball Coach Deb Miller knows the importance of supporting the cause — and through a project called, "You've been Flocked," she's sharing that passion with the school's volleyball teams.
"Every year the volleyball team does a fundraiser for breast cancer," player Sydney Greisch said. "Our coach lost a loved one and feels strongly about helping others affected by it."
When a person is "flocked," it involes the volleyball teams filling their home's yard with plastic flamingos. Miller said a letter is also given to that family explaining that the group is trying to raise money to fight breast cancer. The person who has been flocked can pay $25 to have the flamingos removed, or for $35 for removal and also the choice of where the birds should go next.
"Most pick the next house," Miller said, adding that the birds remain in one place for two to three days. The project has raised $1,000 this school year.
Senior Captain Taylor Miller said the varsity, junior varsity and freshmen volleyball teams combined efforts for the project, making it a fun way to get to know everyone in the sport — whether or not they play on the same team.
"We thought it would be a cool way for the volleyball team to get together and grow as a family. ... The most fun about it was just to be able to grow as a team," Taylor Miller said.
"Flocking was an awesome experience for us high-schoolers," Greisch. "Running around sticking flamingos in the yards of local families with our teammates was so much fun. This fundraiser provided us with team bonding time. It was heartwarming to know we were doing it for a great cause, too."
Taylor Miller said the group did three homes a week for about two months. On Monday, at the volleyball banquet, the group presented the $1,000 to Angie Filetti-Beschta, a former graduate of Port Washington High School with breast cancer.
"Ms. Filetti-Beschta thanked the team and told us how much this meant to her," Greisch said. "There was not a dry eye in the audience! Our flocking really paid off."