This past Sunday morning, September 4th, over 100 runners and walkers took part in Run4Kids, a 5 km run around Bayfield to raise money for Memphis —a 9 year old boy living with Cystic Fibrosis. Memphis is a member of Make-A-Wish® Southwestern Ontario, an organization that grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions. Such efforts enrich the lives of children like Memphis by providing hope, strength, and joy!
Memphis enjoys video games, building Lego, playing hockey, and participating in triathlons in his spare time. He has a cat named Trader and a dog named Lightning. His Wish is to meet his favourite YouTube star, a fellow video gamer. Run4Kids 2016 raised over $6000 towards Memphis’ Wish, and we are still counting. The success of this event depends upon the support and generosity of donors and participants. Additional donations can still be made here.
Before the run began, Nicole Rogers of Goderich shared her family’s inspiring story. Nicole’s family just returned from her daughter’s Wish Trip to Comic-Con in San Diego where she met her favourite stars. Nicole spoke about the emotional roller coaster ride that her family has been on during her daughter’s treatment and explained how powerful a Wish is, as it provided her family with an exciting trip to look forward to, even on the darkest days. Hearing her family’s story reminded us all how important Make-A-Wish® fundraisers are and why we were all participating during those early morning hours for Run4Kids. After a speech from Jackie Hivert of Make-A-Wish® SWO, all participants and volunteers joined in a video and shouted “Enjoy your wish, Memphis!”
Virtual High School and the Bayfield Optimist Club would like to thank all of the volunteers, participants, and donors for their support in making this event possible, including:
- The many shops around the area for offering discounts to participants and for donating prizes
- The Pink Flamingo Bakery and Boutique of Bayfield for baking fresh biscuits, cookies, and granola bars for participants and volunteers to enjoy
- Shopbike Coffee Roasters of Bayfield for donating their time and warm beverages for participants and volunteers to enjoy
- Bluewater Sanitation for donating the sink
- MyFM radio for sponsoring a week-long advertisement for the event
- Fairholme Dairy for donating chocolate milk
- Mike Graham for donating his time and musical talent
- Bayfield Mayor, Tyler Hessel, for being the lead bike in the race to keep everyone on route
- Foodland of Bayfield and Scotiabank of Goderich for hosting fundraiser barbecues this summer
- Foodland of Bayfield for donating fruit for participants and volunteers
- Libro Credit Union for donating items for our race kits
- The Exeter-Times Advocate, Bayfield Breeze, Goderich Signal Star, and the Huron County Paper for featuring stories about the run
- And everyone else who volunteered, donated, and participated!
We will provide updates on the total amount raised in the coming weeks. We hope to see you next year! Thank you!
UPDATE (November 18, 2016): Representatives from Make-A-Wish Southwestern Ontario came to our office in Bayfield for the final cheque presentation on November 17, 2016. The total raised from the Run4Kids 2016 event was $7754. We are thrilled to be able to make this donation to such a wonderful organization. The Wish Child we are sponsoring is 9-year-old Memphis, who is living with Cystic Fibrosis. Since the event, Memphis has changed his wish to a Caribbean Cruise so he can experience the greatest adventure of his life! He loves exploring and learning about history and culture, and is excited to eat different kinds of food, and try new things!
Thank you to the Optimist Club of Bayfield, the community, our staff, participants, and all of our other supporters. None of this would have been possible without such an incredible community effort. We are excited to hear about Memphis’ Wish Trip!