Society sets out to raise $2.5 million for cancer



    VANCOUVER, March 22 /CNW/ - On the heels of its 'Daffodil Days' promotion
that sees volunteers swap daffodils for donations, more than 12,000 Canadian
Cancer Society volunteers will go door-to-door in April - 'Daffodil Month'- in
a drive to raise $2.5 million for cancer research, prevention, and support
programs.
    For nearly 70 years, cancer crusaders from Whitehorse to Williams Lake to
White Rock have walked a block or two for cancer during the Society's annual
spring fundraising and awareness campaign, and they hope communities
throughout B.C. and the Yukon will follow their lead.
    Fighting cancer is ultimately a personal battle, yet many individuals
find time to support others. Rick Long, a 35-year resident of Langley, B.C.
has volunteered to canvass the same route in his neighbourhood since 2001 for
the Canadian Cancer Society's B.C. and Yukon Division.
    "I do it for a couple of reasons," said Long, aged 72. "First of all, the
door-to-door canvass is in my area and gives me a chance to share useful
cancer information with my neighbours. Secondly, I know the Canadian Cancer
Society does a lot more than raise funds for research. I tell folks about the
practical information, lodging, and transportation services it provides when
people need help the most."
    Barbara Kaminsky, CEO for the Canadian Cancer Society, B.C. and Yukon
Division, says with more than 200 charities in Canada with the word 'cancer'
in their title, the Society relies on its volunteers to inform donors on what
their gift makes possible.
    "Volunteers point out there are other needs - like making translated
materials on cancer available for new Canadians - also supported by donor
gifts," she said.
    Research must continue to reach all affected groups, says Kaminsky. She
is aware of "the increasing sense of urgency to fund research to find out how
we can prevent and treat the majority of cancers."
    Cancer is the leading cause of premature death in Canada. In B.C. in
2006, there were an estimated 20,000 new cases of cancer (700 more than the
previous year) and 8,800 deaths (200 more than 2005).
    Experts predict the number of new cancer cases in Canada will increase by
60 per cent over the next two decades largely due to our aging and growing
population.
    "At least 50 per cent of cancers can be prevented, so we know cancer is
not just something you get; it's also something you can avoid," she said. "Our
volunteers instill hope in Canadians that we will create a world where no one
fears cancer."

    Founded in 1938, the Canadian Cancer Society is a national,
community-based organization that seeks to eradicate cancer and improve the
quality of life of people living with cancer. The Society provides valuable
cancer information services, funds research and educates Canadians on cancer
risks. In British Columbia and the Yukon, it has funded $19 million in
B.C.-based research over the last five years and recently established the
Canadian Cancer Society Chair in the Primary Prevention of Cancer at UBC.




For further information:

For further information: Media contact: Marcelo Dominguez, Manager,
Media Relations, Canadian Cancer Society, B.C. and Yukon Division, T: (604)
675-7340, C: (778) 686-1300, E: mdominguez@bc.cancer.ca

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Canadian Cancer Society (BC and Yukon Division)

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