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April 26/08 10:12 am - Sears National Kids Cancer Ride


Posted by Editoress on 04/26/08
 

Fifty Canadian Men and Women Cycle 7,600km For Children Living with Cancer

The Sears National Kids Cancer Ride Begins June 2, 2008 in Vancouver and ends 19-days Later in Halifax

Imagine riding your bike between 4 to 8 hours non-stop every day for 6 months. A daunting task, you might think, but not for the 50 cyclists training for the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride. On June 2, 2008 a peloton of 50 cyclists will take to the highways of Canada, embarking on a 7,600 km cycling adventure that will take them from Vancouver to Halifax in 19 days. This challenge – one of the largest fundraising events on behalf of childhood cancer in the world - is no small feat, both for the national riders and the charities that will benefit from the funds raised from this event.

This spring, Coast to Coast Against Cancer Foundation and retail giant Sears Canada will raise awareness and approximately $1.5 million for children living with and beyond cancer as they cycle across Canada. Along the route, national riders will be joined by supporters and other cyclists who have registered for shorter 25 and 100+ km community rides as they stop at Sears locations and pediatric oncology centres. Both national riders and community riders will sign a giant card, designed by a child, as a symbol of love and hope for all children battling cancer.

“On behalf of all doctors and health care professionals working in the field of childhood cancer care in Canada, I give my full support to this tremendous initiative and applaud all those who contribute by riding, fundraising and volunteering and especially, donating, to improve the quality of life for our children with cancer,” said Dr. Victor Blanchette, Chair, Canadian Council of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Directors. “As someone who, on a daily basis, sees the devastating effects this disease can have on both the kids who suffer from it and their families, I see the impact the funds from this event will have on the frontlines of this battle,” added Dr. Blanchette.

Childhood cancer is the number one disease-related cause of death among children in Canada. Approximately 1,300 children under 18 are diagnosed with cancer each year and 20% of those will succumb to the disease. Another 10,000 are already living with cancer or its long-term effects. More than 50% of survivors of childhood cancer will face “after effects” of their disease, including second cancers, as well as permanent learning disabilities and sterility. These “after effects” are sometimes debilitating and life threatening.

“This event, the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride, is really an endeavour from the heart for everyone involved. We are committed to doing our part to help children and their families impacted by cancer through funds that this event will raise,” said Jeff Rushton, Founder of the Coast to Coast Against Cancer Foundation. “Funds raised by community rides and special events will be directed to the local pediatric oncology centres across the country,” explained Rushton. “While donations raised by the national riders will support national pediatric oncology initiatives in three major areas of need: research, education and transition and survivorship.”

“It’s heart-wrenching when you consider the courage and determination of these young children in their battle with cancer and we are proud to support this event,” said Dene Rogers, President & CEO, Sears Canada. “An illness such as cancer has a great impact on the entire family. This is an important cause to our customers and associates, and we are pleased to play a leading role in bringing increased awareness and funding to it.”

So important is the ride that three Sears employees have signed up to be national riders. Gord Cheong, a fifty something graphic designer and photographer at Sears head office in Toronto, typifies the passion for this cause.

“I have lost family members to cancer and I believe the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride can make a difference,” explains Cheong. “It’s for the kids. When I consider what it must take to battle cancer as a child, I have no problem committing to three hours a day of training so I can ride across the country to help them.“

Coast to Coast Against Cancer Foundation is a national charitable foundation dedicated to improving survival rates and quality of life of children living with and beyond cancer. The foundation runs a number of high quality, physically challenging local, regional and national events that raise funds directed towards pediatric oncology research, survivorship and support programs. Through its volunteer-based operating model and corporate sponsorships, the foundation’s objective is to distribute 100% of donations from individual donors directly to the programs it supports and it does not make use of professional fundraisers. The foundation runs or is affiliated with a number of events including Tour For Kids Ontario, Tour For Kids Alberta, The Inside Ride, Ride for Karen, and the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride across Canada.

Sears Canada is a multi-channel retailer with a network of 196 corporate stores, 179 dealer stores, 61 home improvement showrooms, over 1,800 catalogue merchandise pick-up locations, 106 Sears Travel offices and a nationwide home maintenance, repair, and installation network. The Company also publishes Canada's most extensive general merchandise catalogue and offers shopping online at www.sears.ca.

For more information, to register as a rider or a volunteer, or to make a donation, visit www.searsnationalkidscancerride.com or call 1.866.381.4446.

 


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