Castlegar CiB plants hope for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

By Contributor
October 21st, 2016

Many hands will make light work this weekend when locals gather in Castlegar to plant 5,000 daffodil bulbs to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research.

The public is invited to bring a shovel and get their hands dirty for a good cause both Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. when the newly expanded Garden of Hope will take shape. Donations will be accepted on site for the Canadian Cancer Society to be designated to breast cancer research.

This year’s project is five times larger than 2015 when 1,000 bulbs were planted outside the Chamber of Commerce building.

The sunny yellow daffodil is a symbol of hope for people with cancer and represents a promise to continue the search for a cure.

The Garden of Hope is now set for the Highway 3 turnoff in the Castlegar Airport bowl, just past the “Welcome to Castlegar” sign. Citizens of the region are invited to take part in this community project, perhaps in memory of a loved one who lost their fight to cancer or in recognition of a survivor.

The Garden of Hope is led by volunteer Darlene Kalawsky of Castlegar Community in Bloom (CiB) and is supported by the Kootenay Robusters and the Canadian Cancer Society.

“The thread here is that CiB and the Kootenay Robusters continue to highlight the challenges of breast cancer, and we’re offering support to their mission statement,” explained Kalawsky. “The garden will give the gift of remembrance.”

The project has garnered much interest and support from community leaders like MLA Katrine Conroy and Castlegar city councillors Sue Heaton-Sherstobitoff and Deb McIntosh, who plan to come out Saturday.

The public is asked to join the planting party and make a stand during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. There have been many strides since 1986 when breast cancer patients had a 73 per cent chance of survival. Today, thanks to significant investment in breast cancer research, the survival rate is 88 per cent, according to the Society.

“The Garden of Hope is a really special project as it gives people in the community a chance to connect and then there is this real build up until spring comes and the flowers bloom,” said Valerie Rossi, Annual Giving Coordinator.

“It is a pleasure to work with Darlene, who is so connected in her community and works hard to make a difference – not to mention the rest of CiB and the Robusters.”

The project is fitting for the dragon boat team, which includes members who are breast cancer survivors.

Volunteers and community members in attendance will be led by team captains wearing safety shirts and vests.

There will be parking at the Castlegar Chamber of Commerce. The public can access the garden location by walking over the bridge to the grass bowl area.

The Garden of Hope would not be possible without Castlegar CIB purchasing the bulbs and an in-kind sponsorship from Kalawsky Chevrolet, which is providing materials, vehicles, and a canopy.

If you would like to help with this project or need more information, please contact Kalawsky at 250-365-2155 or darlene@kalawsky.com.

Categories: General


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