There are approximately 6.7 billion people in the world, each one with their own jobs, hobbies, family, friends and struggles, but a common life issue that links us all together is cancer. In some way or another cancer has touched many individuals whether it’s you, a parent, sibling or friend that has it or has overcome it. It can be the knowledge that people do have it and the willingness to do something about it, whatever it is, cancer has impacted the population on many levels. Cancer has taken the lives of many loved ones and currently there is no definite cure, just treatments.
Terry Fox was a Canadian hero that was one of the people who stood up to cancer. Fox had bone cancer himself and even had his right leg amputated because of it, but it was the suffering of other patients that overcame him and drove him to raise money for cancer research.
Although his run started out slowly with not much publicity, he kept running on and made it a journey Canadians will never forget.
He made it to Thunder Bay, Ontario where he discovered cancer had attacked his lungs. His run ended there but his dream carried on.
His journey has inspired Canadians and people across the globe and his legacy has even made its way to Ponoka. Students from every school in the town will be taking part in the annual Terry Fox Run this month to raise money for the Terry Fox Foundation.
Students have raised a lot of money in the past runs and the community support is a must in order to make a difference when it comes to cancer.
The community of Ponoka has been amazing with supporting cancer causes and many residents have taken part in different walks and fundraising events to fight against cancer. The Tough Enough to Wear Pink Day during the Ponoka Stampede is another example of community support and there are also groups, such as the United Yarners, that help comfort people who are suffering.
According to Canadian Cancer Society Statistics for 2007 there are an estimated 14,500 new cases of cancer and 5,800 deaths from cancer in Alberta in a year. On average, 279 Albertans will be diagnosed with cancer every week and 112 Albertans will die of cancer each week.
Approximately 6,800 women in the province will be diagnosed with cancer and about 2,800 women will die of it. On average, 131 women will be told they have cancer each week and 54 women will die because of cancer.
About 7,700 men will be diagnosed with cancer and approximately 3,000 men will lose their battle. About 148 men in the province will be diagnosed with cancer every week and about 58 men will die from it.
Supporting these students in the Terry Fox run is not only important for progressing with cancer research but also strengthens the community, the students and families.
The students involved are taking part in a positive event, and when encouraged by the community, just fuels the motivation to become involved with more similar activities. The support also filters into their daily lives, it gives them the confidence and motivation to take the experience and use it in other areas of life or find other ways to make a difference such as innovative fundraising or cutting hair for locks of love.
It also shows them that when they want to do something, that there are people to back them up in their efforts.
Many of the schools have a presentation on Terry Fox and his dream, that gives insight on cancer and can possibly be a valuable tool, if in the future, they are affected by cancer.
Support these students this year in their goals for the Terry Fox Run and encourage them along the way because by coming together for a cause, we can all make a difference.