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Blakely Colvin bakes Cupcakes for Cancer


 
There’s nothing better than a cupcake, especially if it’s made by 16-year-old Blakely Colvin. She donates the money she earns from homemade cupcake sales to charity through her nonprofit, Cupcakes for Cancer. Her first six weeks in business, Blakely raked in over $5,000. Now, her donations to charity exceed $65,000.

How it all started

When Blakely was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that required three years of chemotherapy. At 11, she was healed.

“I believe God healed me so I could do something for others,” she says. And those others happen to be the kids with cancer whom she got to know at the hospital. “They were the bravest [kids] I had ever met.”

In 2007, when Blakely heard the story of an 8th-grader in her town who had been diagnosed with leukemia, she knew she had to help. “My inspiration for came from my love of cupcakes,” she says. “I thought it would be a perfect way to help raise money—by selling cupcakes!”

She brought her pint-sized cakes to school and sold them for $1 apiece. After 15 minutes, the cupcakes were gone and she had raised $300. Blakely received permission to sell the cupcakes at high school football games, parades and local dance performances, and after six weeks, she had $5,000 in the till.

“We had a huge party for Kevin and gifted the $5,000 to Kevin's family,” Blakely says. “I loved the feeling of giving back and I did not want to stop baking or donating.” With the help of her parents, she creates her nonprofit org, Cupcakes for Cancer.

Sweet smell of success

Every weekend, she and her mom bake about 200 cupcakes. “They are everywhere!” she exclaims. “In the freezer, on the counter. Even though its hard work we enjoy it and its fun.” The pair loves to experiment with new flavors. The best part? “Frosting!” Blakely exclaims. 
 
So far, Cupcakes for Cancer has granted seven wishes to sick kids for the Make A Wish Foundation of the Tri-Counties, donated $10,000 to the
of Santa Barbara, gave two $1,000 college scholarship to high school grads and started a national outreach campaign called "Frosting Hope Across America,” which inspires others to host cupcakes fundraisers, bake and donate, too! 
 
By the time she graduates high school in 2012, Blakely wants to have donated at least $100,000 to charity and to have Cupcake Angels—volunteers who host cupcake sales locally—in every state.
 
What words of encouragement does she have for her peers?  

“A simple idea can go far. Just believe and go forward with your idea,” Blakely says. “Someone will believe in you, even if you are just a kid. Parents are the best believers! It may be hard to get your idea started but remember the outcome will be worth it. You can change people’s lives—even if it is only one!”

Thanks for sharing your story, Blakely!

BY JILLIAN ZACCHIA ON 5/29/2011 9:00:00 AM

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