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Kidney Health Month: Canadians have until March 31st to share an inspirational story and win one of five awards of $500

MONTREAL, Feb. 27, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - An estimated 2.6 million Canadians have kidney disease or are at risk of developing it. Moreover, nearly 40,000 people are treated for kidney failure with dialysis or kidney transplants.  Since 1990, this number has more than tripled, and the individual burden on patients and their loved ones remains high.

"Kidney disease, particularly toward the end stage, is a huge burden, and many people suffer in silence," says Paul Shay, national executive director of The Kidney Foundation of Canada (KFOC). "This is why we created the Kidney Stories of Hope campaign." Canadians are invited to share their inspiring stories about how they have dealt with the challenges of living with kidney disease or about someone they know who has risen to the challenge. "It is our hope," adds Mr. Shay, "that through these stories, others will find the strength and inspiration to continue fighting this devastating disease."

Throughout March, Kidney Health Month, Canadians are invited to submit their "Kidney Story of Hope" through a new tool available on the KFOC website at, which allows them to create a personalized story page. A jury of Kidney Foundation staff and volunteers will award five regional winners (British Columbia, the Prairies, Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada) with the Shire Inspira Award for most inspirational story. Each regional winner will also receive $500, courtesy of Shire Canada.

New this year!

A new award has been added for those who also wish to contribute to The Kidney Foundation's fight to ease the burden. Participants can use their story page to invite people by e-mail, Facebook and Twitter to make donations in support of their story. This new option is entirely at the participant's discretion, and the submissions will still be judged on their merits. This year, a non-monetary prize for the Kidney Story of Hope Outstanding Contribution will be awarded to the participant whose story raised the most donations for the KFOC.

Also new this year, participants will not only have the opportunity to post their stories online in writing via their story page, they can also choose to upload a video on YouTube and embed it into their story page. By creating story pages, participants can share their experiences and garner support via Facebook and YouTube.

Here are some tips to help you write a winning Kidney Story of Hope:

  • Novelty: Is there something unique or different about your story? Have you found a new way to cope with kidney disease?

  • Impact: Will your story help or change how other people with kidney problems work or live?

  • Human interest: Does your story inspire or motivate people in some way? Did someone inspire you—if so, how?

Winners will be announced in April 2012. For more information about The Kidney Foundation of Canada's Kidney Story of Hope campaign, visit

About The Kidney Foundation of Canada
The Kidney Foundation of Canada is the national volunteer organization committed to reducing the burden of kidney disease through funding and stimulating innovative research; providing education and support; promoting access to high quality healthcare; and increasing public awareness and commitment to advancing kidney health and organ donation. 


For further information:

Irene Aguzzi
National Director, Communications and Marketing
The Kidney Foundation of Canada
Office: 514-369-4806, ext. 227
Cell: 514-458-5342

Dominique Quirion
NATIONAL Public Relations
Office: 514-843-2302
Cell: 514-531-5752

Colin Longhurst
Senior Consultant
NATIONAL Public Relations
Office: 416-848-1393

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