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Teen Goes on Cell Phone Detox to Raise Funds for Breast Cancer Research

By BCRF | July 24, 2015

Allegra Colonna takes on a 28-day cell phone-free challenge to honor her late family friend

Like many eighth graders, Allegra Colonna has her share of hobbies. She plays softball, the violin and guitar. She loves to read, play with her dog and go to concerts. And her cell phone is with her every step of the way. That was until a few weeks ago when she decided to give up her iPhone for a month to raise funds for breast cancer research. So far, Allegra’s 28-Day Cell Phone Free Challenge has raised more than $700 for BCRF.

“I recently lost a very close family friend to breast cancer, Tamara Rossi. She was like a mother to me. Tamara was very crafty and was always up to exploring and teaching us new things, which is what I loved about her. She was a very sweet, loving, gentle and caring person,” Allegra, 13, said.

“I decided to turn a challenge into a way to fundraise and try to prevent anyone else from having to deal with grief or having a loved one suffer.”

The idea for the phone detox came about in July when Allegra’s family was on vacation in Italy. Given the expense of an international phone plan and the new experiences that could be jeopardized by the lure of Facebook, Allegra’s mom and dad challenged her to give up her mobile for a month. 

“My mom wanted me to be present and see what changes occur in the next month. Would I see the world differently? Maybe I would find a new passion or hobby,” Allegra said. But after accepting her parents’ dare, she took it one step further.

“I decided that if I was to give up my phone for 28 days, then I would want something in return. So, I managed to think of a way to make a fundraiser out of my phone-free challenge,” Allegra said. She started a fundraising page on BCRF’s website and the rest is history.

Besides the support of her family and friends who have helped her fundraising, Allegra says she has benefited from putting her phone down. 

“Looking at life from my own eyes rather than from a phone screen can be exhilarating,” Allegra said describing how reading, art and learning to cook have replaced the time she used to spend on social media.

With each donation Allegra is reminded of how her actions are helping others.

“I personally think that finding a cure is very vital, so helping support the research is getting everyone one step closer to the answer,” Allegra said. “I look forward to the day we can say we have a cure for cancer and how honored I will feel to have been a part of that.” 

Help Allegra meet her fundraising goal. Support her challenge today with a small or large donation. Every dollar counts! Learn more here.