It’s a 60-kilometre walk through heat and sometimes rain, but it pales in comparison to the journey that people diagnosed with cancer go through.
The hundreds of people, including survivors and their families, that will do the two-day 60 km walk or one-day 30 km walk in the Weekend to End Women’s Cancers “have the attitude that it doesn’t matter if it’s hot or their feet hurt,” said Linda Eagen, president and CEO of the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation. “It’s so minute compared to what people go through during the cancer journey.”
The event, taking place Saturday and Sunday, is “a very important event for everyone in the community affected by cancer,” said Eagen.
The event, which has brought in $2 million in past years, supports cancer research, reduces wait times and improves the quality of life for victims of breast and gynecologic (including ovarian, cervical, uterine, endometrial and vaginal) cancers in eastern Ontario.
Money also goes towards helping people in smaller neighbouring communities get treatment closer to home and looks at initiatives to help people live with cancer.
“It has a phenomenal impact on the community,” said Eagen.
This is the first year that the event is raising money for all women’s cancers. Previously, the event was called the Weekend to End Breast Cancer.
One in seven Canadian women will be diagnosed with a breast or gynecologic cancer in her lifetime, Eagen said.
“It’s an unforgettable event,” said Eagen. “Knowing that you’re going to make such a difference is beyond words.”