Nearly $40,000 raised for 2011 Great Strides™ walk
Toronto, ON (November 2, 2011) – For a second year in a row, Lovisa McCallum, Toronto mother of a 9-year-old child with cystic fibrosis (CF) and her family are the top fundraisers for the Great Strides™ walk. This year, the McCallums collected nearly $40,000 for the 2011 walk – the highest amount raised by an individual in Canada. The family will win a prize worth a total value of $3,500.
“It gives our family a sense of empowerment over cystic fibrosis and it’s important for my son, Matthew, and my niece Mallory, that they know I’m working on the solution,” said McCallum. “I want to cure cystic fibrosis for both Matthew and Mallory.”
Cystic fibrosis cuts young lives short and is the most common fatal genetic disease that affects Canadian children and young adults. There is no cure. Each week in Canada, two children are diagnosed with cystic fibrosis and one person dies from the disease.
Every year, families like the McCallums, their friends and family, lace up to take part in Cystic Fibrosis Canada’s Great Strides™: Taking Steps To Cure Cystic Fibrosis Walk. The McCallum family has participated in the walk since Matthew’s diagnosis in 2002, when he was just two weeks old. Since they began fundraising for the walk in 2002, the McCallum family has raised more than $165,000 for the Great Strides™ campaign. Over the years, Lovisa has raised approximately $300,000 – including sponsorships and major gifts – for Cystic Fibrosis Canada’s work. Her colleagues at the Bank of Montreal, who know her daily struggles and feel personally connected to the cystic fibrosis cause, have also helped support her fundraising efforts, particularly BMO Capital Markets, contributing over $125,000 as a sponsor for the Great Strides™ walk in Toronto over the years.
“It is because of dedicated volunteers like Lovisa and her family that help raise awareness and funds for cystic fibrosis research and care,” said Maureen Adamson, Chief Executive Officer for Cystic Fibrosis Canada. “I applaud the McCallum family for being the top fundraiser for the second year in a row, and would like to also thank all of the volunteers and friends and families of those with cystic fibrosis who helped with this year’s event, and who continue to help Cystic Fibrosis Canada set its sights squarely on a cure.”
The Great Strides™ campaign would not be possible without the support of its sponsors: Zellers, Kin Canada, Siemens Canada Ltd., Gilead Sciences Canada and Advocis.
Lace up for next year’s walk on Sunday, May 27, 2012. To learn more about the Great Strides™ walk, visit www.cysticfibrosis.ca/greatstrides.
About cystic fibrosis and Cystic Fibrosis Canada
Cystic fibrosis is a multi-system disease that affects mainly the lungs and the digestive system. In the lungs, where the effects are most devastating, a build-up of thick mucus causes severe respiratory problems. Mucus and protein also build up in the digestive tract, making it difficult to digest and absorb nutrients from food. As improved therapies have helped to address the malnutrition issues, ultimately most cystic fibrosis-related deaths are due to lung disease.
Cystic Fibrosis Canada is a national health charity committed to finding a cure for cystic fibrosis, and to helping people and families affected by cystic fibrosis cope with their daily fight. As a global leader in CF research, the organization invests more dollars in life-saving cystic fibrosis research and care than any other non-government agency in Canada. In 2011, Cystic Fibrosis Canada is investing nearly $6.5 million to fund 56 promising research projects, as well as more than 50 fellows and students, and is delivering more than $2 million to fund clinical care programs in Canada.
– 30 –
For more information, or to speak with a local family affected by cystic fibrosis, please contact:
Media Relations Officer
Cystic Fibrosis Canada
1-800-378-2233 ext. 290