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Getting ready to deliver daffodils are (left to right) Janet Plotkin, service project vice president of the MIT Women's League and coordinator of Daffodil Days; Rui Borges, operations supervisor coach; and Penny Guyer, manager of mail services. Photo by Donna Coveney
Early one morning last week, Mail Services helped the Women's League deliver more than 29,000 bright yellow flowers to the 53 departments who took part in this year's Daffodil Days, which benefits the American Cancer Society.
In addition to delivering the pre-ordered bouquets, the Women's League, with the help of the Center for Cancer Research, is selling daffodil bouquets in Lobby 10 and the Medical Department lobby this Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Since its inception in 1998, Daffodil Days sales have increased by more than 50 percent each year, and the number of participating departments has grown from the original 16 to 53. The event has become so large that the Women's League gratefully accepted Mail Services' offer to organize and deliver the daffodils this year.
With pre-sales and projected lobby sales, MIT will raise more than $15,000 for cancer research, education and patient service this year.
There was stiff competition among departments for top sales honors. Four topped 100 bouquets; the Sloan School led with 173, followed by Resource Development with 157, Facilities with 156 and biology with 103. Many other departments greatly increased their sales this year.
Daffodil Days, which originated in 1954 in Canada, raised more than $1 million in Massachusetts last year and $40,000 in Cambridge (25 percent of the latter total from MIT alone). Each bouquet delivered at MIT comes with a card listing tips to reduce the risk of cancer.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on March 29, 2000.