Our Voice Is Getting Louder

July 15, 2015

Summer is here, we, and other organisations like us are gearing up for September. We have secured September first for the CN Tower to light up in Gold this year. There will be many other “landmarks” lighting across North America and the world this year in support of all families touched by Childhood Cancer. Thanks to the hard work and determination of other Childhood Cancer advocates and organisations around the world the movement is growing and our voices are getting louder! Keep up the good work people and remember…no one else is going to do this for our children.

We will be launching our 2015 blood campaign on August 26th 2015. I know we are half way through this year and I should have posted this a long time ago but our goal for donations in 2014 was 6500 donations. We encouraged 10061 donations in support of children fighting cancer!! Thanks so much to everyone who donated with our Partners for Life # GOLD013121. What a success. Please continue to support us and donate on a regular basis. We are looking for “Ambassador” families from across Canada. If you are interested in that role please visit our facebook page at www.facebook.com/GRCPartnersForLife and send us a private message. We need your help in making our blood drive a success again this year.

It just so happens that today I was in the Cancer Centre here in London doing some work. I haven’t been in there for many years. I couldn’t believe the rush of emotions that hit me as I made my way through the building. Sadness, being full of hope, fear, anger….. It brought back so many memories of the the 30 trips over six weeks we made there for Stephanie’s radiation treatments. Looking For “Nemo” in the aquarium, and her and I going to Crabby Joe’s after her treatment for 25 cent wings. Most of all a profound feeling of love and appreciation that I have for her. It took a lot to keep from breaking down right there in front of my co worker and everyone else. You can look at her and you couldn’t even begin to believe me if I told you what Stephanie has endured over the past 11 years and the brutal side effects she continues to endure to this day to be here with us….you just couldn’t.

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Gold Ribbon Walk.

October 7, 2014

The Gold Ribbon Walk was a wonderful success! The grand total raised was $18855! Not too bad for our first year. The day was a beautiful fall day that brought out plenty of our families and  lots of great people looking to support a great cause. We would like to thank all our volunteers and sponsors and most of all the people who raised money  for Childcan.

We had a group of PMDU nurses who accepted the “Pie in the Face” challenge from Ollie the clown and Julie. These nurses are the front line when it comes to treating children with cancer. They  are wonderful, caring people who make a difference every day. They deserve accolades for all that they do!

Our September blood campaign has wound down. We do not have our totals yet from Canadian Blood Services but we are confident it was a great success as well. We of course will update when the final tallies are in. Don’t forget you can donate with our PFL # GOLD013121 all year long . On that subject we would like to thank  Neal Rourke (Parent) and  Sandi Jones (supporter and friend) for getting our blood campaign and a few of our amazing children some exposure on the Jumbo Tron at TDStadium in Ottawa! Thanks also to Chloe at Ottawa Sports & Entertainment, Ottawa Fury and TD Place Stadium Ottawa. Here is the short clip that sports fans see on the screen during games. watch for it as it may eventually show up at the venue of your favourite team in the future. Note: Your speakers are working. This is just a clip without sound. :)

We are working on another stamp campaign to get into the hair of Canada Post. I’m sure by now they figured they were out of the woods…not the case Canada Post! We’re coming for you again. You can’t ignore these Children forever! We will leave it at that for now. Take care and hug your children.

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So Much Going On!

September 19, 2014

Hello GRC friends, families and followers, please watch and SHARE this 1 minute video clip of Elizabeth May speaking on behalf of all of us. Can I ask you all do something for me?….for the childhood cancer community? Please send the link to your MP’s and to your MPP’s as well, ask them to please get behind our campaign and help make change for children that have been touched by childhood cancer.
Thanks everyone! Steph

THANK YOU Elizabeth May!!

Tomorrow the CN Tower will be lighting in GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness for the fourth year in a row. We have been asked quite often about our event at HTO Park. As mentioned it will not take place this year. We like many will miss it but Gold Ribbon Campaign will be back next year!

Like last year, BC Place Stadium will light on the west coast on the same day as the Tower. Our friends at BC Gold Ribbon Campaign have worked hard and tirelessly this year and are putting on an incredible event for families in attendance! It all takes place at the Olympic Village and this is what the evening will look like if you are going to be there. If you won’t be there watch for pictures/videos on our site in the coming weeks.

                                                                   Childhood Cancer Awareness – Sept. 20th

 3:30 to 6:30 pm Free time to explore the activities for each organization.

 3:30 to 4:00 pm Jazz Band (Eastside Syncopators)

 4:00 pm Event opening

Opening statement by Brooke Malakoff.

Joyce Murray, Member of Parliament

Raymond Louie, Councillor for the City of Vancouver

Proclamation from the City of Vancouver

Special guests

Introduction to the organizations

 4:30-5:30 pm Jazz Band (Eastside Syncopators)

 5:30 Event presentation resumes

A Parent’s view of Childhood Cancer

A Physician’s viewpoint

A Teen’s viewpoint

Candle lighting

Closing remarks by BC Gold Ribbon

 6:30 Science World lights up in Gold

 7:30 BC Place lights up in Gold

Looks Like an AMAZING evening for our families In BC! Thank You, Tina and everyone involved in planning and making this event happen and “keeping the ball rolling” for Stephanie! You all are amazing and enjoy sleeping all day Sunday!

 

Don’t forget next weekend Saturday September 27 is the Gold Ribbon Walk. Please come out and support a great cause as we help raise funds for Childcan. If you haven’t already please visit the site and make a pledge to one of the teams or even an individual walker. Visit this link if you would like to pledge Team Gold Ribbon Campaign!

P.S. Our thoughts and prayers are with our dear friend Shane and the MacPherson family.

 

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Gold Ribbon Campaign Childhood Cancer Blood Drive.

August 25, 2014

Steph will tell you from first hand experience that a bag of platelets is a life saver to a kid fighting cancer. There are thousands of kids in Canada fighting cancer today.  Stephanie survived that fight, and now she fights to make a difference for Children with cancer. You can help. Call and make an appointment with our Parners for Life # GOLD013121. Come out Wednesday make a blood donation meet Steph and be inspired.  Kids can’t fight cancer alone! To make it easy just click the following “Hotspot Link” to register;  Click here to join the Gold Ribbon Campaign’s life-saving team

Gold Ribbon Launch poster jpg

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September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

August 13, 2014

We will be launching our Canadian Blood Services campaign again this year. The kick off here in London is August 27. Last year’s campaign was a great success, so successful in fact Canadian Blood Services wants to take the Gold Ribbon Campaign Childhood Cancer Awareness blood drive nationwide! Canadian Blood Services was very pleased with the number of donations we received in honour of Childhood Cancer awareness. In fact, believe it or not we are the largest Partners For Life group in Canada!  What does this mean? Well to us it means we can take an awareness campaign for Childhood Cancer…… OUR children across the country. Stephanie dreams of a day when a new chemo agent is designed just for a kid like her. Not one that was designed for an adult. Sure it may help win the fight now but at what cost later on in life…kidney damage, loss of hearing, vision, the ability to walk, death as a young adult? Listen up families, NO ONE IS GOING TO DO THIS FOR US!! Not media, not government, not even  the Canadian Cancer Society! It is up to us as parents to make change for our children and those children who come after them! We need to demand our children get the same respect  from drug companies, government, etc, that breast, colon, prostate, testicular, etc.. etc.. cancers get. No time to get involved? Ask your child how much time he or she set aside in life for cancer.

Having said that….we are going to have a “soft launch” nationwide this year, and a major launch next year. We really need families from across the country to be Gold Ribbon Campaign “Ambassador” families, especially families from Alberta and Saskatchewan as we have non from these areas.

Families can organize clinics in honour of their child. Steph uses ‘Gold Ribbon Campaign’ for the name so that families from across Canada can host clinics in honour of their own child….but we are ALL raising awareness for childhood cancers across Canada by using the Partners for Life ID number.

Ambassador families do NOT have to organize blood donor clinics; CBS will manage that part of the campaign. We are asking our families to help advertise the clinics. Families can advertise through Facebook, twitter, mass emails, schools, work places, churches, community groups and even post hard copies of flyers around their community. We can supply a letter template for families that are not comfortable writing their own when writing to the papers. We have the flyers printed and ready to go. Our families here in London and surrounding area all pick a different day/evening to spend at a clinic and we thank donors for coming in and answer any questions they might have about our own stories. The donors are always very happy to meet a survivor.  The girls have made 6,000 Gold Ribbons that they hand out to donors as a little ‘thank you’. We can mail you as many Gold Ribbons as you think you may need; 250, 500…whatever you might need.  You will not be on your own; a Community Development Coordinator from Canadian Blood Services will be working very closely with you to make sure your blood donor clinic is as successful as it can be!

 

If you are interested in becoming an ambassador family for the Gold Ribbon Campaign to help encourage blood donations, please send your contact info using the “Contact Us” button at the top of  the page.  We will be happy to call you so that your family does not have long distance charges on your phone bill. We will then pass your name and contact info onto the staff at the Canadian Blood Services clinic in your area. They will work with you to see what date works best for you. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to be in touch…we’ll be happy to help in any way we can!

Our Partners for Life number is #GOLD013121, we are asking Canadians to please donate to support children and adults during their treatment for cancer. You can register on line at www.blood.ca or in person at a clinic.

 

Many new families have asked about our CN Tower event this year, and unfortunately it will not be taking place. The logistics and cost are one thing but as many may remember getting to the event last year was a nightmare. We were informed by officials in Toronto that the construction in the area is even worse this year so as much as it hurt we decided to hold off for 2014. That’s not to say we won’t be doing something for Childhood Cancer awareness. We are teaming up with our favourite partner Childcan again this year for an event. It will be a little different than our CN Tower event in that not only will there be food, and fun for the kids, but we will be raising much needed funds for Childcan at the same time. We are pleased to be a partner in the first annual Gold Ribbon Walk For Childhood Cancer. It will take place on September 27 2014 at Greenway Park in London. Gold Ribbon Campaign will be putting on the Bar B Que and entertainment for the kids. We know many of you who are reading this know the many wonderful things Childcan does for families with a Childhood Cancer diagnosis. This day gives you an opportunity to help them continue providing those services in Southwestern Ontario. (and you won’t get stuck on the highway in a broken down bus!!) We had hundreds and hundreds of people come out to support our CN Tower events so we can’t see any reason we can’t get that many people can’t come out for a day of fun in support of Childcan! Visit this link,  Gold Ribbon Walk 2014  to register yourself,  a team or  join a team. I know the Gold Ribbon Campaign is looking for team members looking to raise a ton of money! Come on people lets get involved, we hope to see you all there!

As everyone knows Stephanie has been trying for years in vain to get Canada Post to do a Commemorative Gold Ribbon Stamp to honour all Canadian Children and their families touched by cancer. Tens of thousands of letters of support were sent to Canada Post the first year, meetings with government officials, letters to and from Buckingham Palace, meetings last year in Ottawa with Jim Phillips (Director of Stamp Services) and Elia Anoia (Stamp Program Development). DEAF EARS! Why are none of these people listening? Still no stamp, you would think the support of an estimated 30,000 Canadians would be worth something……nope Tommy Hunter needed a stamp. This goes back to my rant above about these children getting respect they deserve! Stephanie isn’t giving up, she is bound, bent and determined to MAKE someone listen! Well thanks to the Jenkins Family a meeting was set up with MP Joe Preston. Joe was familiar with Stephanie’s campaign although he had never met her. They sat down for just over a half hour or so and discussed Stephanie’s dream for a Gold Ribbon Stamp. Mr. Preston was very impressed with the work and effort that has been put into this campaign and the amount of support it has garnered. They discussed different approaches we could employ to help the cause.  Steph was very encouraged walking away from her meeting with Mr. Preston (unlike the meeting with Mr. Phillips last year). Although he could not promise her a stamp, he did promise to do everything he can to put her in touch with the people who could. Stand by we may need your support again to show Canada Post Stephanie means business!  We will give an update when we hear any news.

 

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It Has Been 10 Years Today.

February 23, 2014

 

 

Today marks the 10th anniversary of Stephanie’s diagnosis. I will post Pie’s Facebook post from today….it pretty much sums things up.

 

“Ten years ago life as we knew it was over.
Slumber parties with friends became slumber parties with fellow patients on the floor. The waiting room became our kitchen and those green pull out chairs were never so comfy. The hospital became …our home and everyone there became our family. We were lucky enough to make it through. The road will never end but walking it together and walking it with the best of people by our sides makes it possible. Things were always shitty but we always found a way to have fun with it. I will never forget how the community came together for my family when we needed it.
It has been a decade since my baby sister was diagnosed with her first brain tumour. No matter how fucked up thing got, we stayed together as sisters, we always found a way. And we always will. So glad to have them both with me.” 

You three girls make Mom and I proud. I love you all.

Dad

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CN Tower 2013

September 24, 2013

Well…..it rained, and it rained, and then rained some more, but…..just as Nancy and Stephanie were about to get things rolling, it stopped! We were given a wonderful surprise with a double rainbow! Everyone in attendance knew the children who were responsible for that.

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Despite the rain, the construction, the closed expressways and even a broken down bus….people came out and enjoyed the evening. It was great to see everyone and it just goes to show you how the Childhood cancer community will take whatever is thrown at them and they will get there and support one another. Like Stephanie said this past weekend “It poured, it was cold, it was foggy and one of the buses broke down. Turned out to be a wonderful night though! 
If something as simple as rain made me give up, I wouldn’t be here.”

In fact some brave families marched from Sick Kids hospital to HTO park. They walked about 45 minutes in the cold rain holding a banner and chanting. All of them were decked out in GOLD! To see news coverage click the link below.

City News Coverage of Gold walk to end Childhood Cancer

 

SAMSUNG CSC

Thanks to all of our guest speakers. Thank you for sharing our passion to make a difference for children with cancer.

 A special thanks to Nestle Waters Bottling plant and head office in Guelph for inviting our families out to your Bar B Que on Saturday afternoon. Despite the rain I know they enjoyed your hospitality.

A very special thanks to Badder bus lines driver Dan for taking good care of his passengers and his concern for their safety when his bus ended up disabled on the highway. It was considered an added adventure to those involved except for the two Windsor Spitfires fans that were on the bus…..they may have considered it Karma. (Just kidding Coral-Ann and Riley) The good people at Badder have been a great support of the Gold Ribbon Campaign and we look forward to working with them for many years. 098

We want to thank all of our volunteers. At 8:00am Saturday morning they were working out in the pouring rain getting things setup and in place. We could not do this without you guys and we appreciate everything you do for us. Also the Optimist members that came out and manned the barbque for us. Special thank you to Toronto Police Service, 52 Division Community Response Unit & Auxiliary Police Officers for supporting our event and keeping the families walking from Sick Kids to the park safe.

 We would like to thank all the generous sponsors that helped make the day possible. All of you together help make a great day for some inspiring kids and their families.

2013 BANNER

Last but certainly not least, a heartfelt thanks to all of the families who make the trek from all over the place to Toronto to support the Gold Ribbon Campaign. You inspire us to do what we do.

Dean, Renee, Nancy, Pie and Stephanie

P.S. Anyone who would like to share some pictures from the evening, I am working on putting together a video from the event and didn’t get as many pics as I would have liked to.

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3rd Annual Day of Awareness and Action for Childhood Cancer

September 17, 2013

******DON’T FORGET IF YOU’RE TAKING THE BUS FROM LONDON THE DEPARTURE TIME IS 11:30******

It is down to crunch time for our event in Toronto. We are tying up “loose” ends but here is what it will look like.

3rd  Annual Day of Awareness & Action for Childhood Cancer

Speaking Agenda – September 21, 2013

6:15 – Nancy, Pie & Steph, Opening Remarks (covers housekeeping as well)

6:20 – Childcan, tba

6:25– Canadian Blood Services, Marisa Gatfield

6:30 – POGO, Karen Drybrough

6:35 –  tba

6:40 – Coast to Coast, tba

6:45 – music

6:55 – OPACC, tba

7:00 – Bronwyn Huffman, survivor

7:05 – Recognition for the ones we’ve lost, reading

7:10 – Camp Ooch, tba

7:15 – music

 If you are taking one of our buses please be advised they will be boarding in front of tower B at the Children’s hospital in London at 11:00am and departing from the hospital at 11:30am.

On the way one of the buses will be making a stop to pick up some families from the Woodstock/Ingersol area. For those families involved the bus will be stopping at the car pool lot at highway #19 across from the Elmhurst Inn.  Bus is leaving the hospital in London at 11:30 and would likely arrive at the car pool lot within 20 minutes so please plan to make sure if you are catching the bus there you give yourself time to get there as we don’t want to leave anyone behind!  All buses will be making a stop in Guelph for approximately 1 hour at the Nestle plant to pick up bottled water for the event in Toronto. While the buses are being loaded there will be a reception for everyone on the buses that will include a bbq lunch and activities and treats for the kids!

From there it will be off to HTO Park for the event. The buses will be boarding to leave the park between 8:45 pm and 9:00 pm to head back to London. We hope everyone enjoys the day and we are looking forward to seeing all of you there!

NOTE: There are a couple of blank spots in the speaking agenda that I hope to update when the information arrives so you may want to check back leading up to the event. I hope I have everything covered. If you have any questions please use our contact us button.

2013 CN Tower Poster

As mentioned a couple weeks back an oncology mom from Vancouver contacted us and asked us to light something in GOLD. We contacted BC Place Stadium and they agreed to light in GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness. This Mom went above and beyond and put together an amazing event to go along with the lighting! We really want to thank Tina Chin for taking the Gold Ribbon Campaign to British Columbia and being a voice for children with cancer! So it looks like we have a BC “chapter” of the Gold Ribbon Campaign! Here is Tina’s poster and letter for the event at BC Place Stadium. If you are out west please support Tina’s huge effort and stop by! Why not stop by BC Gold Ribbon Campaign’s Facebook page  and say hi!

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September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month.

GOLD RIBBON CAMPAIGN in BC – Inaugural rally on Saturday, September 21st

 

Our goal is to raise awareness to childhood cancer that has touched so many families.   There are approximately 100-120 newly diagnosed patients each year and there are 300-350 kids on active treatment at any given time.   For the first time, B.C. Place Stadium and Science World will participate in the National Gold Ribbon Campaign by shining gold lights at 7:30 pm.

Show your support for the BC Chapter of the Gold Ribbon Campaign and gather to view the gold lights. Meet by the Olympic Village at the foot of Columbia and Athlete’s Way.

From 6:30 to 7:30 pm, we will be handing out gold ribbons to write your name to honor and to show support for the kids who have battled with cancer. At 7:15pm we will have speakers. The ribbons will be assembled together to create a large gold ribbon display. The display will be presented to the BC Children’s Hospital Oncology department to honor and support every child in BC.

Please email BCgoldribboncampaign@gmail.com to find out more about our event on September 21, 2013 as information becomes available or follow us on Twitter bcgoldribboncampaign@BCgoldribbon.  To find out more about the national Gold Ribbon Campaign, go to http://www.goldribboncampaign.com .  We look forward to your support and a large turnout on Saturday, September 21st.

Sincerely,

Tina Chin

BC Gold Ribbon Campaign

 

 

We didn’t get a chance yet to thank Canadian Blood Services for honouring the Gold Ribbon Campaign in Ottawa last weekend. It was an amazing event and they went over the top to show all the honourees their appreciation. Thank You.

As you know while we were in Ottawa last week we spoke on Parliament Hill. It was a great event organized by a couple Moms of from Ottawa. We want to thank Jenny and Kari for inviting us to speak at the event and we are looking forward to next year’s already!

Here are a couple pics from each event.

kidscancerrally-71

9736633564_195aaabb10_oDean_and_Stephanie

 

 

 

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Meeting with Canada Post

September 10, 2013

We are home, it has been a long day. We have lots of news about the last three days, but for this evening we will just give you an update on our meeting. Not only did we sit down with Jim Phillips (Director of Stamp Services) but he brought along Elia Anoia (Stamp Program Development). We would like to thank them both for taking the time to sit down with us.  We wish we could say our kids will be getting their stamp tomorrow but we cannot. Although Stephanie came out of the meeting a little upset, we feel the meeting went well overall. I think we may have opened their eyes a little to the struggles children that are diagnosed with cancer and their families face when it comes to huge gap in awareness and fair treatment regarding funding for research. They both listened to all we had to say, which of course included “we will not go away”. They accepted our new letters of support that we received from key community members, and correspondence we received from Buckingham Palace and the Federal Governor General’s office. They assured us they would table our new information for discussion and we would hear back. Stephanie doesn’t want journeys like her’s and Emilie’s to be for nothing. She has faith that there is more out there for tomorrow’s children……we just have to find it. She hopes when she does hear back, Canada Post will set a precedent in Canada and be part of it.

 

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Meeting with Director of Stamp Marketing at Canada Post!

September 3, 2013

Ok everyone, we got confirmation this morning that while we are in Ottawa we will be meeting with Jim Phillips, Director of Stamp Marketing at Canada Post! We’ve followed the rules we’ve been through the processes, we’ve collected tens of thousands of letters of support and still Stephanie has not received a Gold Ribbon Commemorative stamp to honour those children touched by Childhood Cancer. We aren’t sure what will come of this face to face meeting but it may be our best chance yet of convincing the powers that be that this stamp would be an important tool in raising awareness to Childhood Cancer. We need your help. What we would like is for everyone who visits this page to go to www.facebook.com/gogoldcanadapost  Steph needs you to “like” the page if you haven’t already and “share’ it with all your facebook friends, your Twitter followers, and even the people in your old address book in the table where your old rotary phone used to be! Ask them to like it and share it too. Stephanie is hoping for 10,000 likes before our meeting on the 10th! She thought they would go nicely with the over 25,000 letters of support she collected and handed Canada Post in 2011. Eight thousand likes in a week a lofty goal? You’re talking about a kid that was given 2-3 months to live in 2005…….

Come on Childhood Cancer community and it’s supporters, let’s make this happen!

 

stampsample

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