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Wisconsin’s Cookie Lady Raises Thousands for Cancer Research

Sheila Berklund of Luck, Wisconsin, referred to as “the cookie lady,” bakes cookies to raise money for the UW-Madison Carbone Cancer Center. She offers people a bag of freshly baked cookies, including a tag reading Cookies for Cancer, in exchange for a donation to cancer research. Sheila’s goal is to raise enough money so she doesn’t have to sell cookies anymore.

Sheila began selling cookies to support a cancer race in her community. Since she lost her parents to cancer, the cause was personal. Because Sheila had difficulty asking people for donations, she decided to take a different approach the second year. When Sheila made a batch of cookies, and her husband was working out of town and their grown children were out of the house, Sheila had many cookies left over. Although she initially gave away the extras, she decided to sell them to raise money for the cancer walk.

The first year, Sheila offered chocolate chip and coconut cookies. When her husband requested peanut butter and her neighbor oatmeal raisin, Sheila began making a variety. She now bakes 12 to 14 flavors of cookies. Along with cranberry and espresso chip, Sheila continually comes up with new flavor combinations while letting go of others.

When Sheila’s local cancer race merged with and moved to neighboring Frederic, her sister suggested using Cookies for Cancer to support their local high school’s Bulldog Stomp Cancer Run/Walk, benefiting the UW Carbone Cancer Center. Sheila liked the fact that the money is raised through a student-run event and stays in Wisconsin.

In two years of fundraising for the Bulldog Stomp, Sheila made two gifts to the UW Carbone totaling more than $10,000. Although she doesn’t keep track of her fundraising, Sheila has raised thousands more for cancer research over the years.

Like Sheila, you can benefit people in your community who are battling cancer. Provide your time or a financial contribution to Chix 4 a Cause. Learn more about our Gifts of Love program at today.

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