It’s April, time to support the fight against cancer

Awareness: Spirit Square event kicks off annual campaign

By the time April comes around, the daffodils are in bloom but that’s not the only reason you’ll see the beautiful yellow flower everywhere.

It’s also the symbol of the Canadian Cancer Society. April is daffodil month and you’ll be able to contribute to cancer services in Campbell River by supporting the annual door-to-door fundraising campaign or the street teams selling pins and daffodils.

“On April 5 we will have a drop in at Spirit Square with a few speakers and our street teams will be looking for your support all around town with daffodils and pins,” said Linda Lazare, president of the local branch of the Canadian  Cancer Society.

Donor dollars are used for research on all types of cancer, education  and direct support for the cancer patient. Studies have proven more than 50 per cent of cancers can be prevented through healthy lifestyle choices, such as not smoking, eating right, staying out of direct sun, avoiding carcinogens, exercising regularly and getting plenty of rest.

One of the people working on this year’s door-to-door campaign is Tammy Brooks, a cancer survivor herself.

Brooks learned she had leukemia in 2009 and it went into remission in 2010. But in 2011 she had to receive a stem cell transplant because of the return of her cancer. It’s not as simple as it sounds. Stem cell transplanting involves “total body radiation” which “pretty much kills your immune system,” Brooks said. Since then, however, she has been cancer free.

“I am happy to say that I am a survivor,” Brooks said. “I am very blessed.”

She volunteers with the Cancer Society because it’s a way to pay it forward for all the help she received during her treatment.

She had to travel to and from Vancouver and eventually had to rent a place in the Lower Mainland to continue her treatments. Through it all, she received rides through the Cancer Society as well as other assistance.

“I said if I make it through this I am going to pay it forward,” Brooks said.

She certainly has been doing that. In addition to co-spearheading the annual door-to-door campaign, brooks also volunteers in the society office a couple of days a months well as help with special events.

“I try to make a contribution,” she said.

The local chapter runs on volunteers and Brooks is happy to contribute, like everyone else in the office. And you can do your part by coming out on Saturday to the Spirit Square, buying a daffodil pin from someone on the street, or contributing through the door-to-door campaign.

“Working together we can help eradicate cancer and improve the quality of lives of those living with cancer,” Lazare said.

For more information and support, their office hours are 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Monday to Friday and 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. during the summer. They are located at 1423B-16th Ave, phone 250-286-1955. For cancer information service, call 1-888-939-3333 or visit online at