As it observes its 10th year this year, the region’s largest cancer fundraiser, CIBC FirstCaribbean’s Walk for the Cure is giving the bank’s businesses across the region three ways to mark the milestone – the traditional walk with friends and family, a drive for the cure, or a virtual event.
The bank’s walk management teams have recently started planning for this year’s event, which takes place during the first weekend in October.
“Covid-19 has caused us to be constantly looking for creative ways in which to continue to engage in all aspects of our lives, and the celebration of our 10th anniversary hosting Walk for the Cure is no exception.
“We have asked our various business units to choose the type of activity which best suits the prevailing public health scenario in their territory,” said executive co-chair of the walk and Managing Director, Retail and Business Banking, Mark St Hill stated in a CIBC FirstCaribbean release.
He also thanked the thousands across the bank’s 16-member regional footprint as well as sponsors and staff members for “walking with us over the decade, whether you were there from that very first walk or joined us along the way, your support has made a fundamental difference in the lives of persons directly affected by cancer and their families. Your funding and your fellowship has been invaluable”.
In Antigua and Barbuda, efforts are being ramped up to rally support and raise awareness about cancer. This year, the branches will again host the “Drive for the Cure” as our main event, as well as other fundraisers to include, Hike for the Cure, a Walk for the Cure Challenge, Sip and Paint for the Cure, and Raffle for the Cure plus other in-branch fundraisers.
As usual all funds raised will be donated to the Breast Friends Organisation and the Oncology Department of the Sir Lester Bird Mount St John’s Medical Centre.
Meanwhile, the bank’s executive co-chair and Managing Director, Wealth Management Dan Wright said he looked forward to the support of the region’s corporate sector for this year’s walk given the challenges which many of the cancer care and support charities that benefit from the proceeds of the walk are facing.
“Many of these charities are struggling as a result of reduced donations while at the same time recording an increased demand for their services,” he noted.
“We are very much aware of the challenges which the Covid-19 pandemic has dealt to many businesses. Indeed, the last year has been a struggle for businesses of all sizes as they have sought to reposition and prioritise in order to remain viable.
“However, we are hopeful that resources, however limited, will be found to support the vital work of those charities and institutions that we support with our walk.”
The walk began as part of the celebrations to mark the bank’s 10th anniversary, and takes place across its 16-member footprint. It has raised more than US$2.9 million over the past nine years.
The funds generated from the walk are used primarily to assist with the purchase and maintenance of equipment used in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer patients.
They are also used to provide assistance, care, and counselling to patients and their families, as well as to raise awareness and stress the importance of early detection through education campaigns across the region.