For the past twelve years, the students of MGCI have laced up their running shoes on an annual basis in honor of the inspirational icon Terry Fox to raise money, support cancer research, and raise cancer awareness within the school. The Terry Fox Run 2014 was a success, raising hundreds of dollars over the course of the two-day event, and all of the profits will be donated directly to the Terry Fox Foundation.

The event kicked off at lunch on 23 September 2014, with students flooding into the galleria and cafeteria to take part in the fundraising initiatives organized by SAC and the MGCI Cancer Society. Music pumped through the cafeteria to accompany the many activities offered. The most popular event took place in the centre of the room, with a ring of students encouraging the sopping wet apple bobbers. Adventurous students paid a dollar each to compete to see who could grab an apple first with their teeth, with the winner receiving a prize. SAC President Maria Kashif, drenched from the shoulder up, said: “The apple bobbing was crazy! All the activities were so much fun, and all of the money raised goes to charity.” Other activities, however, such as the kissing booth, fortune teller, and face painting, were less successful.

Meanwhile, the hallway outside was filled with students who had followed their noses to the galleria, which was filled with vendors selling food. Samosas, cupcakes, pizza, pop, and cookies were sold. Amid the throngs of students and the delicious aromas of food, the school mascot pranced around, pausing to take pictures and give out high-fives. Overall, the one-hour event not only raised $560, but also promoted school spirit.

MGCI had a goal to raise $1500 for the Terry Fox Foundation this year. Approximately one third of the goal amount was raised through food sales. Students were also asked to donate a “Toonie for Terry” in their classes. However, the total amount of money raised has not been confirmed, and it is unclear whether or not the goal amount has been met.

Students buying food to support the fundraiser. Photo: Lily Song

Students from MGCI running for the Terry Fox Run. Photo: Valiant Chan

The next morning, classes were called down to the gym by grade to watch a presentation to kick off the run. Mr. Fox, the staff member who first established the Terry Fox Run at Marc Garneau CI, gave a short speech about the importance of supporting cancer research. This was followed by a short presentation by Henry He, club president of the MGCI Cancer Society. Students then had the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful weather by walking, jogging, or running the approximately 4 km route through the valley surrounding the school. A few students were stationed along the course to collect donations and to encourage students as they passed by. The entire run lasted around two hours, finishing at about 11:30.

“Terry owed his life to cancer research, demonstrating how it can save lives,” said Henry He, on the importance of hosting the event at Garneau. “Donating a Toonie for Terry not only funds a variety of cancer research, but also has a real impact on the patients who need it, like Terry in 1980.” Thanks to Terry and the funds raised in his name by people such as those at MGCI, chances of survival with cancer have risen from 50% to nearly 75% from Terry’s time to now. The results speak for themselves.