How Relay For Life works

Relay For Life is a fun and moving overnight experience that raises vital funds for Cancer Council’s research, prevention and support services.

What is Relay For Life?

Relay For Life is a chance for communities to recognise and celebrate those who have overcome cancer or are undergoing treatment, as well as the people who care for them. Relay also provides an opportunity to celebrate the memory of loved ones lost to cancer. 

Each Relay For Life event is organised by a local volunteer committee on behalf of Cancer Council. Teams of 10­–15, which are headed up by a team captain, get together and fundraise year-round. Everyone then meets at the Relay to celebrate the amazing fundraising achievements of the past year. Teams participate in a relay-style walk or run, challenging themselves to stay on the track overnight. Each event is unique and you can stay for the whole event and camp overnight, enjoy the fun activities and attend the moving ceremonies that make Relay For Life so special.

Put your thinking cap on to plan your team theme, campsite decorations and costumes. It all adds colour to the event. While it's not compulsory to dress up, many teams do. From superheroes of hope to clowns, pirates and space outfits, dressing in theme is a great way to get your team having fun.

Each person on the team pays a registration fee, which includes a shirt and breakfast in the morning. There are no age limitations or fitness requirements – Relay For Life is suitable for everyone. To join in the fun,  register your team online today.

Why do we Relay?

Thousands of Australians participate in over 200 Relays across Australia each year. Some people Relay in memory of a loved one lost to cancer. Some do it to show how proud they are at having survived cancer. Some do it to show they are strong enough to beat cancer. And some simply want to be involved and make a difference. Whatever your reasons, you’ll never forget your first Relay experience! You can read personal stories from Relayers to find out more.

Relay participants are encouraged to fundraise in the lead up to the event, with all money raised supporting the Cancer Council’s vital research, prevention and support services. Check out our great fundraising ideas.

Who can participate?

Everyone! There are no restrictions when it comes to Relay. You don’t have to be over 18 to get involved – anyone can do it!

Relay For Life events also rely on the generosity of volunteers. Check out the difference you can make by volunteering at Relay.

When and where does Relay happen?

There is no one fixed date or place for Relay. Events happen all over  Australia, and all year round! Find a Relay near to you, and either start your own team or join an existing team.

How can I find out more?

Search for your local Relay to find out what happens on the day and read our advice on what to bring, and also visit our FAQ section. If you still have a question, contact your local State or Territory office on 1300 65 65 85.