Dufferin Relay for Life cancer fundraiser at ODSS Friday night

June 14, 2018   ·   0 Comments

By Constance Scrafield

“This is our signature event for cancer research,” said Karen Beaulieu, our contact for the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS). She is very busy at the moment keeping tabs on the numerous Relay for Life events taking place at the moment.

The Dufferin Relay for Life takes places this Friday (tomorrow), June 15 at  Orangeville District Secondary School (ODSS), starting at 6:00 p.m. and running to midnight. This is not a darkened adventure through a well-treed path but a safe and simple walk/trot/run around a field at the school. Called a relay because people form teams to take turns doing the walk, handing a hypothetical baton to each on the way.

Ms Beaulieu explained, “People register as individuals or they come with a team  – could be two, could be 50 – any number is fine. Registering can be done in advance on line.”

The goal is $35,000 and is currently half-way there. Each walker is asked to raise $150, if possible, by collecting donations in support of the effort being made. There are suggestions on how to raise such a fund, as well offering the opportunity to purchase a luminary bag for $5.00. It can be decorated and the names of the loved ones added to it.

Just as importantly, no doubt, is the mutual support this brings to people dealing on some level of their lives, with cancer.

The nighttime walk, once a 12-hour endurance, now reduced to six hours, begins with an opening ceremony and a few words, while sorting people with their shirts and purchasing the luminary bags for those who have not already done so. These are illuminated in a follow up Luminary Ceremony at 10:00 p.m., during which the bags, purchased in the memory of or in support for known cancer victims, are lit to add drama and encourage the hope that light suggests for the last couple of hours. Buoying up the level of fatigue that may have begun.

We took a moment to talk about what the funds raised are doing. Primarily, they are used for research into finding a cure for cancer.

“We do only fund the best research, the most promising cures,” she informed us.

As to preventions, she made the point, “We were the ones that campaigned against tanning beds. We do presentations, produce healthy eating publications and do information sessions.”

For smokers, there is plenty of support on how to quit, information and statistics  about smoking. The CCS  pressed for plain packaging, health warning labels on the packs, banning flavoured tobacco and increased taxes on cigarettes.

All are welcomed and encouraged to join the Relay for Life.

Ms. Beaulieu assured the Citizen, “There will be entertainment and activities throughout the time. It is a unique experience.”

For all the details, to register with your team or otherwise, to buy a Luminary Bag or simply donate to the effort, please go online: just Relay for Life in Dufferin, 2018 gets you there.


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