Personal Challenges: Raising Funds for Cancer Research

I recently made a decision to raise money for cancer research. Like a lot of people, cancer has had a direct impact on me. In 2006 I lost my dad to prostate cancer and in the early part of this year, my mom battled and beat breast cancer, thanks largely to research forwarding treatment options.Read More

I recently made a decision to raise money for cancer research. Like a lot of people, cancer has had a direct impact on me. In 2006 I lost my dad to prostate cancer and in the early part of this year, my mom battled and beat breast cancer, thanks largely to research forwarding treatment options. I’ve always taken a bit of a skeptical eye to many of the charity runs – a lot of times I wonder if people even know how much of their dollars goes to the actual cause. I’m not trying to downplay anyone’s efforts and think that however you choose to raise funds for whatever charity you choose to support is a personal decision and you should be applauded just for the idea of it. I have always felt I personally could do better than a run because well, although I’m not in what one might consider to be the best athletic shape of my life, huffing and puffing my way around 5kms doesn’t feel like a strong enough statement for me. Running a few kilometers is something I could do without too much hardship and in a single day.

Terry Fox Statue by Patrick Chondon via flickr
Terry Fox Statue by Patrick Chondon via flickr

I have always firmly believed in Terry Fox, the foundation that bears his name, and the continuing mission it carries out that Terry started. Back in 2004 when CBC launched the Greatest Canadian I voted and campaigned within my family and friends for Terry. I have always believed that the Terry Fox Foundation is an organization I can feel comfortable about ethically speaking –  I know where all of my dollars go and I feel good that they’ve stuck to Terry’s requests that no one should be turned away and that there should be no cost to participate. I also like the fact that 87 cents from every buck goes to actual research, unlike some charities where that amount is only 65 cents. Here’s more about what sets the Terry Fox Foundation apart.

Shauna After
Shauna After

Because I’m not content to just run, I want to do something that shows my support more than the average charity drive. So, I’m shaving my head when I raise $5000 in pledges. Yup, that’s right. Shaving it. My friend Shauna did this a few years ago as a fundraiser for cancer for kids research. You can support me and the Terry Fox Foundation by pledging online here, or you can email me at jen@tenthtothefraser.ca to arrange a more traditional donation of paper money or a cheque. And if you can’t afford to donate – because times are hard right now and I totally get that – think about joining me.  I’ll update from time to time about where I am at with my fundraising efforts, and when the big day comes, I’ll be sure to invite Briana along with her little Flip Camera to document the day. For now, here is the “before”. Try and imagine Shauna’s hairstyle on me:

Me with my current hair
Me with my current hair
Wish me luck!

Jen Arbo

Jen Arbo is the editor and co-publisher of Tenth to the Fraser. She's been writing for the site since 2007 and lives in Sapperton with her family. A project manager at heart, she also operates Hyack Interactive, a digital communications company. Find her on Twitter or Instagram.

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