Canadian Cancer Society

Villanova Relay for Life raises over $50,000

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The fight against cancer got a major boost Friday thanks to students at St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School.

Villanova held its annual Relay for Life with tents and events being inside the school’s track while a Survivors’ Lap and other relays took part on the track itself. Events were held throughout the afternoon and evening with the luminary ceremony taking place at night prior to the closing ceremony.

When all was said and done, the Catholic high school raised over $50,000, far surpassing their goal of $35,000.

A Survivor’s Lap got the Relay for Life started last
Friday at St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School.

Thalia Pandolfi, one of the students on the 14-person organizing committee, noted that “we’re here for one reason – because cancer has impacted our lives in some way.” Pandolfi shared her story, which saw her mother hit by the disease multiple times though now she is cancer-free.

Pandolfi said her mother survived breast cancer but, unfortunately, the fight wasn’t over. Pandolfi recalled a couple of years later, when she was 11-years-old, being pulled from school by her grandmother because her mother was in the hospital. When she arrived at the hospital to find her mother crying, Pandolfi was told she was diagnosed with a brain tumour.

After beating that, Pandolfi’s mother was diagnosed with more tumours again a few years later. When she beat that, unfortunately the fight was still not over.

“When I was in Grade 9, I was told my mother had another brain tumour,” Pandolfi said.

This was a particularly “mentally taxing” period for the family, she said, given all that they had already gone through.

“After you go through something that many times, it’s mentally deteriorating,” she added.

However, Pandolfi’s mother beat that as well and took the survivor’s lap with the other cancer survivors. Pandolfi said it shows how strong her mother is as well as the other cancer survivors.

Pandolfi said it was very gratifying to take the Survivors’ Lap with her mom, and that she couldn’t explain the feeling of walking beside her knowing she doesn’t have to worry about her right now.

There were about 40 teams taking part in Villanova’s Relay for Life. She said the relays on the track were symbolic of what a cancer patient can go through as when a person is tired doing their relay, “you just have to keep going.”

Other events included escape rooms, Family Feud games, a slip and slide, bubble soccer and a variety of themed-relay laps.

Megan Veldhuis and Riley Mayville have fun on the slip ‘n’ slide that was at June 1 Relay for Life event at St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School.

“We’ve got a lot of really fun stuff,” said Pandolfi.

Approximately 450 students participated, she said, most of them being from Villanova although some students from Lajeunesse joined in.

“We have an amazing committee,” she added, noting there was a lot of work put in to make sure the Villanova Relay for Life was successful.

Ed Jovanovski Charity Golf Classic presents $50,000 cheque to Canadian Cancer Society

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Ed Jovanovski Charity Golf Classic has given a big boost to the fight against breast cancer.

The July 13 golf tournament was held at Pointe West Golf Club and raised $50,000 for breast cancer. The official cheque presentation was held Thursday at Amherstburg Buick GMC, as the dealership helped sponsor the tournament and dealer principal Scott Elliott was one of the organizers.

“It’s great,” Jovanovski said of the final total. “I think coming into it, we didn’t know what to expect. With the support from the community, friends and partners we developed, we were able to raise $50,000 for breast cancer research. We are thrilled about that.”

Organizers and volunteers had a number in mind, the former NHL defenseman said, but exceeded it.

The official cheque presentation from July's Ed Jovanovski Charity Golf Classic took place Aug. 10 at Amherstburg Buick GMC. From left: committee member Andrea Sikora, Ed Jovanovski, Canadian Cancer Society's volunteer engagement co-ordinator Theresa Blondin and dealer principal Scott Elliott.

The official cheque presentation from July’s Ed Jovanovski Charity Golf Classic took place Aug. 10 at Amherstburg Buick GMC. From left: committee member Andrea Sikora, Ed Jovanovski, Canadian Cancer Society’s volunteer engagement co-ordinator Theresa Blondin and dealer principal Scott Elliott.

“People are generous,” he said, adding that people are great to support causes like breast cancer research or causes relating to any other kind of illness.

“The feedback was great. We think (the tournament) went well,” he said. “We’re definitely excited.”

Jovanovski has a personal connection to breast cancer, as his mother had stage two breast cancer and is in her second year of remission. His brother Deni played an important role in organizing the tournament as well, he added.

Plans for next year’s tournament are already underway, with the second annual tournament planned for Pointe West July 20, 2018. Elliott said people will be able to get details soon at www.jovogolfclassic.com.

Elliott was also thrilled with the overall total.

“I think it’s fantastic,” he said. “It goes to a great cause.”

Theresa Blondin, volunteer engagement co-ordinator with the Canadian Cancer Society, said breast cancer is the most diagnosed form of cancer in women, with 88 per cent of women surviving the disease. That said, there is still more work to be done with a cure being the main goal.

“We are overwhelmed with the amount of support,” she said, regarding the $50,000 donation.

As the money goes towards research, Blondin acknowledged that research has helped lead to early detection and that has resulted in the 88 per cent survival rate.

“Screening can save your life,” she said.

Villanova students raise big bucks in fight against cancer

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Students at St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School led the way in the fight against cancer last Friday.

The Catholic high school held a Relay for Life event on and inside of the school’s track with early estimates on fundraising totals exceeding $38,500, with more expected.

The organizing committee for last Friday’s Relay for Life event at St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School pose for a group photo. Top row (from left): teacher Mark Strong, Elizabeth Sauve, Meaghan Frank, Alanna Sauve, Madison Laramie, Emily MacKinnon and teacher Ellen Nolan. Bottom row (from left): Rachel Levang, Connor Sloan, Johnny Rosati, Jordan Gaudette and Morgan Keys. The event raised $38,500 at press time with more expected.

The organizing committee for last Friday’s Relay for Life event at St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School pose for a group photo. Top row (from left): teacher Mark Strong, Elizabeth Sauve, Meaghan Frank, Alanna Sauve, Madison Laramie, Emily MacKinnon and teacher Ellen Nolan. Bottom row (from left): Rachel Levang, Connor Sloan, Johnny Rosati, Jordan Gaudette and Morgan Keys. The event raised $38,500 at press time with more expected.

Alanna Sauve, one of the organizers of Friday’s event, said Villanova has a “youth troop” set up that works with the Canadian Cancer Society.

“We build awareness and fundraise,” said Sauve.

Relay for Life teams do laps of the track at St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School last Friday. There were roughly 250 student volunteers from the school involved with the event.

Relay for Life teams do laps of the track at St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School last Friday. There were roughly 250 student volunteers from the school involved with the event.

The “youth troop” worked with the committee that Sauve established to run the Relay for Life, which lasted from 12-11 p.m. It featured teams of students as well as about ten cancer survivors doing laps of the track, games, therapy dogs, music from Villanova students and a concert by The Autumn Kings. A number of teams were part of the event with several in different coloured T-shirts seen walking the Villanova track.

A “luminary ceremony” was held during the evening.

“Unfortunately, everyone has been affected by cancer somehow,” said Sauve. “(The Relay for Life event) has been a great learning experience and we’re having some fun as well.”

Josie Sleiman performs a song as part of the entertainment that was offered during last Friday’s Relay for Life event at Villanova.

Josie Sleiman performs a song as part of the entertainment that was offered during last Friday’s Relay for Life event at Villanova.

Sauve, a Grade 12 student, said all organizational efforts were performed by Villanova students. In all, roughly 250 people volunteered for the event.

“It’s a win-win for our students at Villanova and our partners at the Canadian Cancer Society,” she said.

It was the first time Villanova hosted a Relay for Life event, Sauve added.

“It’s been a pretty good success so far,” she said.

The Ed Jovanovski Charity Golf Classic coming to Pointe West July 13

 

By Jonathan Martin

National Hockey League (NHL) all-star and Olympic gold medal winner Ed Jovanovski is trading in his hockey stick for a golf club in the name of charity.

The Windsor native and former NHL defenseman met with press last Tuesday at Pointe West Golf Club to announce his partnership with Amherstburg Chevrolet Buick GMC in the development of a new golf tournament.

The Ed Jovanovski Charity Golf Classic will raise funds for the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) to support its breast cancer research. Jovanovski said he knows firsthand what the disease can do.

NHL all-star and Olympic gold medalist Ed Jovanovski scrums with the press at Pointe West Golf Club Tuesday, April 18.  Jovanovski announced his partnership with Amherstburg Chevrolet Buick GMC to bring about the first annual Ed Jovanovski charity golf tournament.

NHL all-star and Olympic gold medalist Ed Jovanovski scrums with the press at Pointe West Golf Club Tuesday, April 18. Jovanovski announced his partnership with Amherstburg Chevrolet Buick GMC to bring about the first annual Ed Jovanovski charity golf tournament. (RTT Photo by Jonathan Martin)

“A couple years ago my mother went through a pretty good battle with breast cancer,” he said. “We’re grateful for anything we can do to further (CCS research) along.”

Jovanovski said his mother is doing well, though her time in the hospital was difficult for his whole family. Now that she’s doing better, he said the timing seems right.

“It has always been a dream of mine to hold a golf tournament,” he said. “Obviously, growing up (around here), this area is very important to me.”

According to Scott Elliott, dealer principal for Amherstburg Chevrolet Buick GMC, the tournament, which is set to be held at Pointe West Golf Club, will include a deli-style luncheon, hole-in-one prizes, a putting contest, auctions and dinner.

Jovanovski said he’s doing his best to convince as many of his NHL friends as possible to stop by. He did warn them, though, that no matter who shows up, he will be the best player on the green.

The tournament will be held July 13.

General Amherst’s Pink Day a big success

General Amherst High School’s Pink Day raised $400 for the Canadian Cancer Society. From left: Kelly O'Rourke,  Felicia Varacalli, Keely Gibb, Maria Lederer, Megan Farmer, Dani Leroux, Darby Roland.

General Amherst High School’s Pink Day raised $400 for the Canadian Cancer Society. From left: Kelly O’Rourke, Felicia Varacalli, Keely Gibb, Maria Lederer, Megan Farmer, Dani Leroux, Darby Roland.

By Aaron Wharram

General Amherst High School managed to hold another successful event by raising money for breast cancer research.

The school, in just two hours, raised an incredible $400 Oct. 16. Kelly O’Rourke, community fundraising specialist with the Canadian Cancer Society, visited the school Oct. 27 and accepted of all the money donated from the students of General Amherst. O’Rourke said she was honored that the students of General Amherst managed to raised such a large donation in just a short time span.

Student council prime minister Dani Leroux says that this will not be the last event of the school year where General Amherst will raise money for Cancer Awareness. “We plan on doing an event in December and another one in April,” says Leroux. “We really want to see how much this school can raise in one year, and we think we can raise a lot.”

General Amherst succeeded in winning the Daffodil Award and plan on doing it again.