MAFH Spreads the Love on Valentine’s Day
by Caitlin Connelly on Friday, February 21st, 2014
Every Valentine’s Day, Milton students crowd into Withington as they search for heart-shaped notes and collect roses from significant others, admirers, and friends. The annual Rose Sale, hosted by Milton’s Girls’ Field Hockey Team, encourages students and faculty to send their love through flowers to their fellow peers and teachers.
The money raised from the sale goes toward both the Field Hockey Team and the Dana Farber Cancer Treatment and Research Institution. This year’s sale sold 3,315 total roses, raising a net amount of roughly two thousand dollars for Dana Farber and one thousand for the team.
Although the overall attitude towards the annual sale is positive, the team has recently received an increasing amount of skepticism about the motivations of the fundraiser. “Many people criticize our team’s sale, because they are under the impression that in purchasing roses, they are the ones paying for team gear and other things for our field hockey team,” said Juliet McCann (II), one of next year’s field hockey captains. “In reality, our primary motivations for raising money is to donate to Dana Farber for breast cancer research.”
The rose sale is one of two fundraisers that the Field Hockey Team runs, the other being the “Play for the Cure” game during the fall season, whose profits are donated entirely to Dana Farber. With substantial participation from the Milton community, the annual rose sale allows the team to take advantage of a popular holiday to support both their team and cancer research.
Another area of concern is whether this rose sale is beneficial or detrimental to the community, as doing so may leave people feeling left out or insecure about the number of roses they receive. Overall, students reacted well and got excited about both buying and receiving roses; however, students say tension when leaving lunch come Valentine’s Day is inevitable. Hannah Iafrati (II) said, “I love the idea of the sale, but on the actual day, people tend to use the roses as a way to compare themselves to others.”
This year, the team made an effort to make sure every student received a rose. When asked about this change, Katie Berry, (II) commented, “The ‘pity roses’ are probably worse than not getting one at all.”
Despite the questionable feedback, most students remarked on the positive anticipation of the sale, the amusing creativity of the notes, and the extra fun the sale brought to Valentine’s Day. Teachers seem to remain neutral during the process of the sale, but some express the same concerns about people feeling left out. Erika Lamere (II), another one of next year’s field hockey captains, responded to the negative feedback by stating the sale “gives friends the opportunity to look at Valentine’s Day as more than just a day for couples, but as a day to just feel the love.”
When questioned on the people who did not receive roses, Juliet expressed that “the roses made available for all students were not out of ‘pity’ in any way but rather to let every student know they are an appreciated member of the community. A lot of people focus on the amount of roses received when they should be focused on the more important theme of the day — appreciation.”
With all skepticism aside, the incredible quantity of roses sold each year exemplifies Milton’s strong community and friendships, as well as its awareness of important foundations such as Dana Farber. The rose sale has and will continue to “spread the love” each Valentine’s Day.
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