Cancer support group bands together to help grant a child’s wish

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A local cancer support group has banded together to sponsor a child with the help of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The group, at Saint John’s United Church, has been running every week since Angela Bailey started in it 2000. For the past 17 years, it has provided a place for people with all types of cancer to express themselves and talk about what they are going through.

“The people have so much courage,” says Ellen Miller, the current leader of the group, and a breast cancer survivor. “You get so much strength from a group.”

To celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, the group decided to extend their support to a local young person and sponsor a child in need through the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The mission of Make-A-Wish is to grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.

At the end of September, they met with Janet Lee Ferris, the manager of fund development at Make-A-Wish Eastern Ontario, who explained to them that, in order to sponsor a child, they had to raise at least $10,000. And so, the canvassing began. In just a few short weeks they are just under half way to their goal, with a couple of generous donations. Canvassing will continue throughout the month of October, and anyone is welcome to participate.

Pledge sheets are available at B&H Grocer and tallies will be posted on their bulletin board for anyone interested in tracking how they’re doing.

Asking for donations is just one way the group is planning on raising the money. On December 2, there will be a live auction and dance at the Legion Hall, with all proceeds going towards granting their child’s wish. They are currently looking for donations for the auction and would also appreciate donations of food for the dance, and volunteers to help set up. “When I told my hair dresser, she said she would donate four cuts and blow dries for the auction and make 100 packages of fudge for the dance,” Ellen says, expressing how grateful she is for the support they have already received.

If the $10,000 is reached before the night of the dance, Ellen is hoping to reveal the name of their Make-A-Wish child at the event. “There is no better way to raise money than in the name of a child,” she says.

The auction will be from 1-3 on Saturday, December 2, with the dance starting at 7pm. Tickets for the dance are $10 and can be bought by contacting Ellen at 613-258-7778.

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