Your Dollars at Work
Your Impact in Alberta
A Message from Linda Mickelson, CEO of the Alberta Cancer Foundation
Having participated in the Weekend for the last six years, I know it is much more than a walk through the city. It is part of a movement to end cancers that claim the lives of far too many mothers, sisters, daughters, wives and friends. It is a movement for all of us who believe a cancer-free future is possible. It is an monumental event that changes lives.
I, like so many of you, have suffered the loss of a loved one to cancer. Last year, I walked with my daughter and two sisters in memory of our sister Kym who passed away in 2008 from breast cancer that had metastasized to the bone. Why did it happen? It meant so much to us to learn that one of the research projects being funded with Weekend dollars in Alberta, is focusing on this very question. The Breast 2 Bone Study, which the Alberta Cancer Foundation will support over three years, is breaking new ground and will provide answers that will lead to more progress and ultimately save lives.
The Weekend has enabled us to invest more than $24 million into breast cancer research and programs in just five years! We have launched more than 50 new research projects taking place at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre, the Cross Cancer Institute and the University of Lethbridge. And we’ve made screening and earlier diagnosis possible for thousands of rural Albertans with two mobile facilities, fully equipped with state-of-the-art digital mammography.
But we can’t stop here. This year more than 2,700 new women’s cancer cases will be diagnosed in our province and sadly more than 600 women will lose their lives to breast and gynecological cancers. While we celebrate many milestones, we owe it to those we love to continue walking until we can prevent or cure all cancers.
We need to keep the momentum going. My daughter Kristin - an 11 year survivor of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma - my sisters and I will continue to walk in support of all women’s cancers. One step at a time, one dollar at a time, we know we are making a difference.
As CEO of the Alberta Cancer Foundation, and as a mother, a sister and a woman, I invite you to walk with me on July 23-24 in Calgary, in the 2011 Shoppers Drug Mart Weekend to End Women’s Cancers!
REGISTER TODAY - ask a friend or family member to join you - and take your first steps toward a cancer-free future.
Chief Executive Officer
Alberta Cancer Foundation
Progress Brought to You By Shoppers Drug Mart
Weekend to End Women’s Cancers
Step by Step - Accomplishing Significant Progress
||In 2004, the Alberta Cancer Foundation was able to invest just $300,000 annually in breast cancer research.
||Thanks to past Weekend participants and donors, more than $24 million has been invested in breast cancer research and programs in Alberta in just five years.
||A provincial mobile screening program ran on equipment that was about to become obsolete, threatening to end the program.
||Two state-of-the-art digital mobile mammography units offer greater accessibility to mammograms for approximately 25,000 women in more than 100 rural Alberta communities each year. These units equipped with an examining room have the potential to offer mobile cervical screening in future. This same leading technology was introduced at the Cross Cancer Institute and at fixed screening facilities in Calgary and Edmonton. In total, it’s an $11 million investment funded by The Weekend! Click here for a video of these one-of-a-kind units.
||The Alberta Breast Cancer Research Initiative was launched in 2005 to build a focused research program with 12 new projects at the Universities of Alberta, Calgary and Lethbridge.
||There are now more than 50 breast-cancer research projects funded by The Weekend. And, when gynecological cancer research is added, nearly 80 research projects in total are supported by funds raised in the Weekend to End Women’s Cancer.
||Recruitment is underway to attract a leading researcher to the endowed $5 million Weekend to End Breast Cancer Research Chair.
Step by Step - Pushing the Boundaries of Medical Knowledge
- Dr. Christine Friedenreich, funded by The Weekend, found that physical activity can reduce the risk of breast and cervical cancer.
- Dr. Bassam Abdulkarim is testing a new radiation technology on breast cancer patients following a partial mastectomy. With Weekend funding, he hopes to reduce the incidence of skin fibrosis by about 20 per cent.
- Patients who receive emotional support are better equipped to deal with cancer. Weekend funding is supporting Dr. Linda Carlson’s psychosocial research into alternative therapies that help cancer patients and their families deal with stress and anxiety.
- Dr. Linda Cook’s funded research focuses on the causes of ovarian, endometrial, and breast cancer and finding new, easily measured biomarkers that identify these cancers early in their development so that effective prevention and early detection strategies can be developed.
- Weekend funding is helping Dr. John Mackey find the right drugs to prevent the recurrence of breast cancer. His research analyzes breast tumour samples to understand why some women are free of the disease following therapy and others are not.
- Dr. Neil Hagen’s research funded by The Weekend is testing a faster way to deliver pain medication, giving palliative patients the best quality of life in the time they have.
Step by Step - Easing the Cancer Journey
- Weekend funding helps patients and families focus on standing up to cancer by providing short-term financial assistance for rent, utilities, transportation, groceries and medication for those in need.
- A $1-million compassionate funding program enabled more than 180 women to be treated with Herceptin, an exciting new drug that was under review for government funding.
Where We Go From Here
Walkers have been the energy behind significant progress against breast cancer. Thanks to walkers and donors, we know more about prevention, detecting cancer early and treating breast cancer more effectively.
It’s time to take that same energy to all women’s cancers, such as breast, cervical, endometrial, uterine and ovarian cancers to accelerate progress towards a cancer-free future right here in Alberta.
Working on Your Behalf
The following are just some of the Alberta researchers whose work is supported by funds from Shoppers Drug Mart Weekend to End Women's Cancers:
|Dr. Bassam Abdulkarim
Dr. Oliver Bathe
Dr. Nigel Brockton
Dr. Robert Campbell
Dr. Gordon Chan
Dr. Sambu Damaraju
Dr. Doug Demetrick
Dr. Christine Friedenreich
Dr. Don Fujita
Dr. Mark Glover
Dr. Neil Hagen
Dr. Michael Hendzel
Dr. Frank Jirik
Dr. Olga Kavalchuk
Dr. Susan Lees Miller
Dr. Roger Leng
|Dr. John Mackey
Dr. Tony Magliocco
Dr. Don Morris
Dr. Derrick Rancourt
Dr. Wilson Roa
Dr. Michael Sawyer
Dr. Sanjay Sharma
Dr. Andrew Shaw
Dr. Carrie Shemanko
Dr. David Stuart
Dr. Sung-Woo Kim
Dr. Katia Tonkin
Dr. Joan Turner
Dr. Jack Tuszynski
Dr. Michael Wienfeld
About Alberta Cancer Foundation
The Alberta Cancer Foundation is more than a charity. It is a movement for cancer-free lives, today, tomorrow and forever. It’s a movement of those who know a cancer-free future is possible and aren’t satisfied with “some day.” It’s a movement of those who won't let anyone face cancer alone, of those who know something can be done and know we need to do it. The Alberta Cancer Foundation is a movement of everyday heroes who honour those lost to cancer and stand with those who face cancer today.
Supporting the Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton, the Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary and 15 other cancer centres throughout the province, the Alberta Cancer Foundation is making an impact on cancer research, prevention and screening, and patient support. Some significant accomplishments of 2009 are as follows:
- Funded $14 million of $28 million of research grants awarded by the Alberta Cancer Research
- Established 11 endowed research chairs in whole or in part by the Alberta Cancer Foundation attracting international cancer experts to live and work in Alberta
- Provided funding to launch 37 additional Alberta cancer research projects last year
- Funded Canada's first long-term epidemiology study following 30,000 healthy Alberta volunteers to learn more about who gets cancer and why
- Presented more than 25,000 women across the province with access to state-of-the-art traveling digital mammography screening units
- Supported hundreds of patients through their cancer journeys:
- 548 patients received much-needed financial assistance
- 10,000 patients and families attended patient orientation at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre
- 1,062 patients and families participated in the Arts and Medicine program at the Cross Cancer Institute
- Raised more than $20 million through direct gifts, more than 300 volunteer community fundraising events, annual major events including The Weekend to End Breast Cancer, The Ride to Conquer Cancer, and the Underwear Affair, and the annual Cash and Cars Lottery.
In short, support of the Alberta Cancer Foundation helps move Albertans closer to a cancer-free future. Through groundbreaking research, evidence-based prevention campaigns and support for patients and families, the money raised has a big impact. For more information about the Alberta Cancer Foundation visit albertacancer.ca.
For more information please call .