Each year across the Okanagan, motorcyclists strap on their helmets and ride for a cause, which is raising money for prostate cancer research.
On Wednesday, the group was able to donate the funds to the BC Cancer Foundation in Kelowna, B.C., handing over a $100,000 cheque.
“I can’t tell you how much I’m overwhelmed and honoured to be able to do this for the thousands of men and basically families that are touched by this disease every year,” said Bob Charron, chair of the Okanagan branch of Ride for Dad.
The cancer clinic in Kelowna sees more than 4,000 patients every year
The Prostate Cancer Fight Foundation raised the money through the Ride for Dad events. The funding will support Dr. Juanita Crook’s internationally-recognized work for a highly effective form of treatment.
“Brachytherapy treats from the inside out. We’re putting the radiation directly into the cancer, into where it’s needed and that gives a much higher dose very conformally. We don’t have to travel through all the rest of the body in order to get to where we want to give the dose,” said Crook.
The funding for the research and testing done by Dr. Crook and her team isn’t fully covered by the government, so this six-figure donation goes a long way.
“It allows you to be more creative, do research, investigate different means, and improve treatment. Because you can’t start something new, it’s not automatically a standard of care. First, you have to prove that it works and prove how it’s better, and then the government says, ‘Oh OK, fine, maybe we should support that,’” said Crook.
Ethos adaptive radiation therapy unit one of a kind in Canada
Giving back is so important to Charron as he was treated by Dr. Crook when he had prostate cancer a few years ago.
Edmonton road rage, carjacking spree victim says vehicle rammed 20 times on Henday
Did WestJet pilots reject $300K+ salaries? Union says figures ‘cherry-picked’
“Dr. Crook’s research is incredible. We’ve thrown our seed money in new projects and research. We’ve put brachytherapy about 10 years ahead of its time,” he said.
The cause is also close to his heart because he lost his dad and a brother to the disease.
“You can’t put words behind it and of course, you get emotional about it because I was the lucky one. Today I had people walking by, one lady even on her way to her treatment gave me $20. It’s $5 more than I had yesterday,” Charron said.
Hundreds of motorcyclists raise funds for Prostate Cancer in Okanagan Ride for Dad
Charron also encourages people to speak to their doctors about getting a PSA test.
“The statistics are sad because up to last year, 12 men a day died from prostate cancer. That’s up to 13 now. Sadly not enough men are still not getting checked early,” he said.
The foundation will soon be raising money for the cause once again. On June 11, members of the Okanagan branch of Ride for Dad will hop on their bikes and travel through the valley. More information about the fundraiser and how to sign up is available on the group’s website.
© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.