Brock University once again hosted the Niagara Region CIBC Run for the Cure this past Sunday. The event occurs annually in several places across Canada. Participants run or walk either a one or five kilometre route and raise funds through sponsorship. The money raised goes towards the missions of the Canadian and the Canadian Cancer Foundation which include things such as breast cancer research, education, health promotion, and peer support programs.
The event’s history dates back to 1992, when a group of volunteers were able to gather 1,500 people together in Toronto to raise awareness for breast cancer. That day, they raised $85000 for the cause. The first official CIBC Run for the Cure took place 1997, and since then has become the largest volunteer-led, single day event whose goal is to eradicate breast cancer and it’s effects on countless lives. It is now held in multiple locations in every province across the country. This year it is being held in 57 locations including here, at Brock.
The beginning of the event also marked the beginning of a partnership between the CIBC and the CBCF. On February 1, 20 years after the original partnership formed, the CCS joined the partnership. The CCS is the largest charitable funder of Breast Cancer research in Canada. They have joined forces to more effectively use the resources they have and the money fundraised in research to prevent and treat all types of cancer, including breast cancer. Last year, the CIBC Run for the Cure raised over $17 million and had over 100,000 participants across Canada.
According to the CBCF, one in eight women will develop breast cancer during their lifetime, and thousands more are affected indirectly through relationships with these women. CCS estimates that of all cancer diagnoses in 2017, 25 per cent were breast cancer. Additionally, 13 per cent of all cancer related deaths are because of breast cancer. It is estimated that by 2030, cancer incidence rates will have risen by 40 per cent. With these frightening predictions, it is more important than ever to invest into cancer research and prevention. Since 1980, fundraising and donations have helped to develop new technologies and more advanced treatments which have helped to decrease breast cancer deaths by 44 per cent. It is hoped that more fundraising will be able to continue lowering those statistics.
Brock has hosted the event for the Niagara Region for several years. The five kilometre route takes participants past Lowenberger Residence out to East Academic, then behind Vallee and Decew Residences to Alumni Field, down around to the front of the school, and then to finish a smaller loop out to East Academic and back between Cairns Building and Mackenzie Chown.
Brock had quite a number of student participants, some of whom are members of the Omega Sigma Chi Sorority. Omega Sigma Chi’s Cornerstone event is the CIBC Run for the Cure. The founders of the sorority met after participating in the run, and the sorority has participated in the run ever since. Last year, the Omega Sigma Chi team earned the “Post Secondary Team Challenge Award” for being the top fundraising team for the run. This is the eighth year of the sorority’s participation in the Run. Their team consisted of 21 members and they raised around $2500.
Participants choose to take part in the run for a variety of reasons. Many know someone who has been or is currently diagnosed with breast cancer. Several participants run or walk in memory of a loved one who has passed away from breast cancer. A large number of other participants are breast cancer survivors. Others choose to run because they believe in the cause, even if they haven’t been directly affected by breast cancer.