Do Something Good For Others: Summit for Sick Kids

by Melissa on July 20, 2011 · 0 comments

I learned about the Summit for Sick Kids when Adam McClare, a fellow Torontonian, started following me on Twitter.  After realizing he too was a traveler I looked into his website he provided on his Twitter profile.  I was quickly redirected to the Summit for Sick Kids website which told me all about Adam and his friend Hart Togman’s efforts to help raise money and awareness for Toronto’s Sick Kids Hospital Oncology Department and Cancer Genetics Research Program.

This November marks the second annual climb for the duo.  In 2010 they climbed Mt. Rainier and raised a whopping $15000.  This year they plan on climbing Mt. Cotopaxi in Ecuador with hopes of raising $20000!

Adam was awesome enough to take some time and answer a few questions for me regarding Summit for Sick Kids.  Check out what he had to say and find out how you can take two seconds out of your day to help with their fundraising efforts without even opening your wallet — although monetary donations are very much appreciated.

summit for sick kids
 
How did you and Hart come together for this great cause? Hart and I met a few years back through work (we both work in Advertising) and Hart had this amazing idea. As soon as I heard about it I jumped on the chance to be part of it and help bring it to “life”. Through this, him and I have become best of friends. We both actually have had family who have been affected by cancer. For Hart it was his cousin and for me it was my Mother and two very close family friends. Also, we both have a friend who had cancer as a child. So needless to say cancer has been something that has played a big part in both of our lives. 

There are a number of amazing charities you could have chosen to support, what made you choose the amazing Sick Kids Hospital oncology department as the charity of choice? Well actually the decision was made for some of the reasons mentioned above. Hart’s cousin and our friend spent a lot of time in Sick Kids’ Oncology Department and I worked for years for Camp Oochigeas (a camp for kids with cancer which operates out of Sick Kids) so we both saw first-hand the quality of care given to each and every child. It’s important to note that 50% of funds raised go towards the Oncology Department with the other 50% going towards SickKids’ Cancer Genetics Research Program. Why we chose to split the donation and also donate towards Sick Kids’ Cancer Genetics Research Program is because of its ground-breaking nature. Sick Kids is one of the leaders in cancer research and through this research program, they use world-class techniques to identify those who are at risk based on their genetic pre-disposition for cancer. From that, stringent monitoring can take place so that if the child/teenager/adult develops cancer, it can be treated immediately.  This program has led to significant improvements in cancer survival rates through early detection.

Why did you choose Mt. Cotopaxi for this year’s summit? After last year’s climb we wanted to push the limits a little further. Mt. Cotopaxi is located in Ecuador in the world famous Andes. Ecuador is renowned for their mountain ranges and it just felt like the perfect challenge. Our goal is to push the limits each year, climbing higher and raising more money for Sick Kids. It’s really exciting to see how we have grown so much this year and hope to continue to grow with each and every year.  

What have you had to do to train and prepare for this climb? We are actually starting to ramp up our training for the climb as we are just over 4 months away. We have already done a series of camping trips this year carrying heavy packs, hiking long distances ang getting used to difficult terrain and long days on the trail. Also, we are now increasing our cardio training running and bike riding 4-5 days a week. Another element we have added to our training is rock climbing, which we try and do every week.  

summit for sick kids
How many people do you have climbing with you?
As of now, Hart and I are the climbing team. The climb is open to other individuals but they must pay for their climb and raise a minimum of $500 for Sick Kids. We have a few people interested, but right now are focusing on raising the funds and awareness for the cause. 

How can people support you and the cause? There are a number of ways to support Summit for Sick Kids! People can visit SummitforSickKids.com and click “Donate” and make a donation through the Sick Kids Foundation Website. Also, we are planning a fundraising gala this October (more details to be announced via Facebook over the next month). Another easy way to support Summit for Sick Kids is by liking our new Facebook fan page at facebook.com/SummitforSickKids. For every fan we get up until 1,000 fans, ESKA Natural Spring Water will donate $1. What I stress to people is that a donation doesn’t have to be some absurd amount. Every $1 makes a difference and it’s every $1 that is going to get us to our $20,000 goal. Also by spreading the word to family and friends is another easy way to help us out. Not only do we want to raise money but we also want to raise awareness for the amazing work being done and Sick Kids.  

Any plans for 2012’s Summit for Sick Kids? Of course! But as of now, we are trying to get through 2011…haha! Everyone will just have to stay tuned until next year 🙂

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