Teddy Bear Campaign to Support Childhood Cancer Research

Posted on Friday October 16, 2015

On the surface, six-year-old Luka Andlar looks like a healthy young boy.  That picture of health is partly due to the regular chemotherapy and physical therapy that have been part of his life since junior kindergarten, when he was diagnosed with leukemia. For a young boy and his family, the challenges of living with cancer are so immense, that they’re difficult to imagine. The chemotherapy that is keeping his cancer at bay also causes adverse side-effects.  The impact on his muscles and nerves make physio and occupational therapy necessary so that he may maintain strength and mobility.  Regular trips from Sudbury to Toronto for chemotherapy have to be by air, because sitting in a car for more than 30 minutes is too painful for Luka to endure.

His mother, Allison Andlar, and her husband, Dave, have been doing everything they can to make Luka comfortable on his path to wellness, while raising two younger children.  By the time he is expected to be cancer-free, Luka will have spent four years living with the illness. For Andlar, a registered nurse who worked in pediatric oncology before Luka’s illness, finding a quick cure would be amazing. But, she is also pragmatic. “With what I’ve learned and experienced first-hand, supporting research into pediatric cancer treatment that doesn’t bring on debilitating side-effects like chemotherapy does would make a huge difference.”

The thought that treatments may soon improve gives her hope that Luka’s daily challenges could be made easier, and that other families won’t have to go through what hers has.

Experiences like Andlar’s are strong motivation for Cambrian College Police Foundations students and other students and staff who met Luka and his mother at today’s campaign launch. The ninth annual Teddy Bear Picnic Auction, a student-led event, has raised more than $87,000 for childhood cancer research since its inception. For the next five weeks, students in Cambrian College’s Police Foundations program will be canvassing local businesses and collecting donated Teddy Bears that will be put up for auction and adoption at the November 14th event.   Students across other programs are also supporting the campaign by fundraising and coordinating event-day activities that range from face-painting to auction administration.

Second-year Police Foundations student Melodie Levesque said that students feel honoured to be part of this amazing project, which builds empathy and hones leadership and communications skills that are crucial for future law enforcement officers. “When you meet Luka and his family, you’re inspired to help, and our contributions definitely build skills related to community policing,” Levesque explained. “As a first- or second-year student, you need to be comfortable communicating with the public, and that’s one of our key roles during the campaign. Working in teams, we’ll quickly see how our individual efforts add up to make this project a success.”

The Teddy Bear Picnic Auction will take place on Saturday, November 14, from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., in the cafeteria at Cambrian College.  “Children of all ages can expect a lot of fun,” said Cathy Keaney Burns, Canadian Cancer Society District Manager.  “Everyone enjoys the live and silent auctions, teddy bear adoptions, children’s activities, and face painting. It makes for a great afternoon with your children or grandchildren. ”

Admission and parking are free.  Any business or individual wishing to donate a Teddy Bear for the auction is asked to contact Shanna Crispo, Community Fundraising Specialist, Canadian Cancer Society, at (705) 670-1234, est. 3716, or email Shanna Crispo (Sudbury & District Unit) SCrispo@ontario.cancer.ca.

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Media Contacts:
Gloria Staskus
Communications Manager, Cambrian College
(705)566-8101, extension 7760
gloria.staskus@cambrianinternational.ca

Cathy Keaney Burns
Manager, Canadian Cancer Society, Sudbury and District Community Office
(705) 670-1234, extension 3711
cburns@ontario.cancer.ca

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Cambrian College hosts provincial Early Childhood Educators’ Appreciation Day on October 8

Posted on Wednesday October 7, 2015

SUDBURY –The President of the College of Early Childhood Educators (CECE) will present to Early Childhood Education (ECE) students from Cambrian and 11 other Ontario colleges via a livestream experience at Cambrian College’s eDome on …

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