TORONTO, April 18 /CNW/ - Leona Fields is a breast cancer survivor, accomplished fundraiser, active volunteer, gifted spokesperson, and two-time winner of a Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation - Ontario Region Volunteer Award. This year, she was honoured for her exceptional leadership as a New Run Director for York Region, Leona's home turf, where the Foundation launched a new Run site for the 2009 Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure.
The announcement was made at the 3rd Annual Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation - Ontario Region Volunteer Awards Ceremony that took place earlier today, Sunday, April 18th, in Toronto. This award is presented to a first-year Run Director who demonstrates leadership, a willingness to learn and promotes team work among their Run Committee members.
In her seven years as a volunteer with the organization, Leona has embraced several different roles and made important contributions to the breast cancer cause. She found that being on the organizational end of the Run was an entirely new challenge but one she found to be "very, very rewarding." Working closely with her experienced Co-Run Director, Zina Atkinson, they built a strong Run Committee, and exceeded all expectations for a first-time Run event at a brand new Run site: the York Region Run site drew more than 100 volunteers and 1600 participants, and raised close to $400,000.
A breast cancer survivor herself, Leona Fields has made it her mission to help create a future without breast cancer. "Why am I doing this? It's for my daughters," she says emphatically. "I don't want them to have to go through what I went through. They are my inspiration."
The Foundation was started in 1986 by a group of volunteers and it remains a volunteer-led organization. The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure, the Foundation's signature event, is the largest, single-day, volunteer-led event in support of breast cancer in Canada, uniting more than 70,000 participants and 6,000 volunteers in Ontario alone.
"This disease touches thousands of women and their families every year," says Sandra Palmaro, CEO of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation - Ontario Region. "The depth and breadth of our volunteer commitment demonstrates the importance and pervasiveness of the cause."
The Volunteer Awards Ceremony is held in recognition of National Volunteer Week, but the success of Foundation volunteers is evident year round. Because of the contribution of time and skill of these individuals and the dedication to the cause they inspire in others, incredible advances in breast cancer research are being made possible.
"Progress in our lifetime is more than possible - it's proven," adds Palmaro. "Real change is happening - change that is saving and improving lives. This is the day we thank our volunteers and acknowledge their extraordinary contributions to our goal of creating a future without breast cancer. We can't thank them enough."
The Foundation's Ontario Region was proud to recognize these distinguished volunteers as winners at the 3rd Annual Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation - Ontario Region Volunteer Awards Ceremony. Thanks to their efforts and those of others like them, the Foundation can continue to work towards creating a future without breast cancer.
The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation was founded in 1986 as the first organization in the country devoted exclusively to the funding of breast cancer research, education and awareness initiatives. The Foundation continues to blaze new trails in breast cancer and breast health by directing donor dollars to world-class researchers and clinicians who are contributing to groundbreaking progress in breast cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care. Since 2000, the Foundation has directed more than $68 million to the cause in Ontario alone as a result of fundraising initiatives like our signature event the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure, hundreds of thousands of donors and the efforts of a committed volunteer network numbering in the thousands.
SOURCE Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation - Ontario Region
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