About Us

Established in 2001 by a handful of breast cancer survivors, the Machestic Dragons incorporated as a 501 (c)3 nonprofit in 2002 and is the first – and largest – breast cancer survivor (BCS) nonprofit team in New Jersey.

While the Machestic Dragons team is based in central New Jersey and practices at Mercer Lake in Mercer County Park, the activity and camaraderie of our organization has drawn survivors from many communities in New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania. Although we share the common experience of breast cancer, we differ in age (20s through 80s), educational and occupational pursuits, family dynamics, and athletic interests and abilities. We are known as a “floating support group” who shows a passion for life and the determined dragon spirit. As a result, our membership has nearly doubled in size over the last 4 years. The Machestic Dragons initiated a Mixed Team (men and women) which consists of family, friends and supporters. This means our BCS and Mixed Teams can practice together and race in their respective divisions at dragon boat events in the region and beyond – doubling the fun for all of our members. The Machestic Dragons enjoy the paddling season (mid-April through mid-October) but are in touch with each other during the rest of the year. We have a weekly fitness program in the winter (courtesy of the United Strength Academy), social gatherings, nonprofit/business fairs, and fundraisers (in addition to our signature event – Paddle for Pink. So, membership in the Machestic Dragons is a year-round affair.

OUR MISSION

  • To raise awareness of breast cancer and the benefits of dragon boat paddling
  • To show and mentor others who are weakened by the struggle with breast cancer that there is life after this disease
  • To encourage and empower ourselves and others to face our dragons with an indomitable spirit and
  • To look beyond today to a future filled with hope and promise

In the boat we…

  • Paddle together
  • Support each other
  • Learn from one another
  • Laugh together
  • Enjoy competition
  • Overcome fear
  • Encourage others
  • Make true friends
  • Take pride in our accomplishments
  • Break the silence of cancer

We also embrace an attitude about what cancer CANNOT do…

  • Invade the soul,
  • Suppress memories,
  • Kill friendship,
  • Steal eternal life,
  • Destroy peace,
  • Conquer the spirit,
  • Shatter hope,
  • Cripple love,
  • Corrode faith,
  • OR

  • Silence courage –
  • UNLESS we let it!

OUR PARTNERS

The Machestic Dragons has established relationships within the community in an effort to fulfill its mission. From the beginning, the Princeton YWCA Breast Cancer Resource Center (BCRC) encouraged the dragon boat team and helped to connect their breast cancer survivors with our activity. Both the Machestic Dragons and BCRC discovered new opportunities to build and support our memberships. More recently, the Machestic Dragons formed a partnership with the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey (RCINJ) where, in addition to diagnosis and treatment, there is a focus on research and trials for breast cancer cures. Both BCRC and RCINJ have received donations from the proceeds of the Paddle for Pink.

The Machestic Dragons has also reached out to the medical community – area doctors, therapists, and others who treat breast cancer patients/survivors; have formed an Advisory Board of people from various walks of life interested in helping us grow and fulfill the Machestics’ mission. The Machestic Dragons have also established relationships with such corporations as Sanofi USA, Church & Dwight, ETS, and AT&T, along with the United Strength Academy.

Leave a Reply