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.

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