QUEBEC, Sept. 19, 2011 /CNW/ - Fifteen national relay riders are cycling
across Canada in the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride to help raise
money and awareness in the battle against childhood cancer during
Childhood Cancer Awareness Month this September, arrive in Montreal
today. Now in its fourth year, the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride is
the longest charitable cycling event of its kind in the world.
The 15 national relay riders departed White Rock, BC on September 7th and are riding relay-style across the country before arriving in
Halifax on September 22nd, completing a journey that will take them over 7,000 km. Twenty-three
regional relay riders, six of whom are Sears associates, will accompany
them on their trek.
Among them are Daniel Charpentier, a Sears associate (Brossard), who
will ride from Ottawa to Quebec City, and Dr. Yves Pastore, a pediatric
hematology oncologist at CHU Sainte-Justine, who is part of the
Canadian Council of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Directors (C17) team,
who will ride from Toronto to Quebec City. François Grenier is another
regional relay rider who will ride from Quebec City to Halifax.
Among the 15 national cyclists is 17-year-old cancer survivor Josh
Nelson of Cambridge, Ontario, who will be riding a tandem bike across
Canada with partner Mark Burger of Georgetown, Ontario. Hundreds of
other community cyclists are expected to join Josh and the national and
relay riders along the way as the cyclists pass through their cities
and towns - all united in the goal to improve the quality of life for
children and their families, living with and beyond cancer.
"This ride is all about helping kids and their families cope with
cancer," says Simon Bourque, Regional Vice-President, Corporate Stores,
Sears Canada Inc. "We're proud to help support this ride by raising
awareness and money for research and treatment through the involvement
of our partner and beneficiary, Opération Enfant Soleil, our associates and the vast network of Sears locations across the
Along with national initiatives, money raised by the Sears National Kids
Cancer Ride in Quebec will be given to Opération Enfant Soleil. Money will help fund provincial pediatric hematology and oncology
research programs, including those at CHU Sainte-Justine, CHU
Sherbrooke, the Montreal Children's Hospital of the McGill University
Health Centre and the Centre mere-enfant, Centre hospitalier
universitaire de Quebec.
Cancer is the leading cause of disease-related death in children in
Canada. Each year in Quebec, between 250 and 275 children are diagnosed
with cancer. More children die of cancer each year than asthma, cystic
fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, and congenital anomalies combined.
Childhood cancer is very different from adult cancer and places its own
unique demands on our healthcare system.
"Kids with cancer and chronic hematological diseases teach us lessons
every day," says Dr. Yves Pastore, pediatric hematology oncologist at
CHU Sainte-Justine. "Their courage and strength are extraordinary.
There is still a long way in our battle against cancer and
hematological disorders. As children with cancer and hematology
disorders deserve better chance and better life, I want to contribute
to this quest as a physician by all possible ways. My implication in
the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride is one of them."
As the riders stop at many Sears outlets across the country, Canadians
will have an opportunity to meet and encourage the riders and sign
specially designed T-shirts that the national riders will put on at
each community event. The goal is to have these T- shirts completely
covered with signatures and messages at the end of their journey in
Canadians can also track the Ride and become a fan of Ben, Sears bear
mascot, who is travelling with the riders and is posting daily reports
on his Facebook fan page called Adventures with Ben the Sears Charity Bear on www.facebook.com/benthesearsbear.
The Sears National Kids Cancer Ride has helped raise over $4 million for
the Canadian Council of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Directors (a
group of hospitals known as the C17), the national organization
representing all 17 pediatric hematology/oncology programs across
Canada and for pediatric oncology centres across Canada to support
initiatives at the local level. This year's goal is to raise $1.2
"While September may be Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, for children
suffering with cancer, this is a year-round battle," said Jeff Rushton,
Founder, Coast to Coast Against Cancer Foundation (CTCACF), a
volunteer-based registered Canadian charitable foundation focused on
improving health outcomes and quality of life of children and families
impacted by cancer. The Foundation develops and conducts events like
the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride in communities across Canada.
"Money raised is critical in helping fund programs to improve the
survival rates and quality of life for children fighting this horrible
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.
Sears Canada is a multi-channel retailer with a network that includes
196 corporate stores, 272 hometown dealer stores, 33 home improvement
showrooms, 1,800 catalogue merchandise pick-up locations, 108 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.
SOURCE Sears Canada Inc.
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