National Honouring Canada's Lifeline

 

Honouring Canada's Lifeline is an annual ceremony held in honour of all milestone donors, community leaders and volunteers. Local events are hosted across Canada and a national celebration is held each September in Ottawa.

Peer Recruiter

Sylvia understands that more mothers of ethnic backgrounds are needed to help build a diverse public cord blood bank in Canada. A labour and delivery nurse, and one of the few prenatal instructors who offer classes for Chinese immigrants in the Greater Vancouver area, Sylvia is passionate about educating expectant Chinese parents and encouraging them to consider umbilical cord donation.

Peer Recruiter

Manal is driven to help people, inspire youth, and make a difference. She organized her first blood donation event for her 20th birthday in February 2017, and has continued to support community donation events ever since.

Peer Recruiter

Fred’s enthusiasm for donating blood dawned an initiative now being embraced by other Ontario school boards. In 2017, as he approached his 100th donation milestone, Fred learned that thousands of new donors are needed each year. He already recruited his children to give blood, but now felt he needed to do more. Fred, a school principal, encouraged his staff to give blood at his next appointment.

Peer Recruiter

This April, more than 60 new Canadians from Syria donated blood in Halifax as a way of thanking Canada for giving them a new home. Like Mohammed Harb, who came to Canada in 2016, they all came as refugees within the last two years. Mohammad worked for weeks to organize the event, called Syrian Canadian Donation Day, and recruit first-time donors.

Partner

Qualico and their business unit, Pacesetter Homes, are dedicated donation partners located in throughout Western Canada in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Regina and Winnipeg. Employees embrace the company’s group donation events and the friendly competition among colleagues that goes with it. The company’s program champions use a variety of methods to encourage their teams to take part in donation events, including posters, email blasts and phone calls to get trade partners on board.

Partner

As a hospital that admits 25,000 patients annually, performs over 12,000 surgeries and sees 67,000 emergency room visits, staff, leadership and physicians of Grand River Hospital (GRH) in Ontario’s Waterloo Region know firsthand about the need for a strong blood system.

Partner

Employees at McCain Foods Canada’s New Brunswick operations started supporting the blood system as a partner in 2009. Within a year, their donation pledge increased from 30 to 50 units of blood. Nearly a decade later, with their commitment strong as ever, they continue to drive success at mobile donation events in the communities of Florenceville-Bristol and Grand Falls. The company has contributed nearly 4,900 units of blood and 228 new donors — a significant accomplishment for a small, rural area.

Partner

Peacock Sheridan Group kicked off Hockey Is For Everyone month in B.C. by adopting the date of February 1 for a group donation event in Kelowna. For a wealth management company, this initiative was a strange marriage of hockey and blood donation. The connection was Kurt Jory, one of the firm’s advisors.

National Partner

Kin Canada is an all-Canadian service organization with 438 clubs and over 6000 member across Canada. Kinsmen, Kinette, and Kin Clubs are dedicated to serving their communities’ greatest needs through service projects and fundraising for local and national programs.

Volunteer

Layne is a recognized member of the Campbell River community, who does a stellar job of organizing donation events and training other volunteers. He sets up booths in the community to promote blood donation and recruit donors, ensuring that enough donors are ready on donation day.

Volunteer

Kevin’s boundless energy and strong leadership skills make him an outstanding in-community volunteer. As the driving force behind several blood typing and swabbing events—on campus at the University of Alberta where he is a student, and at major events within the city of Edmonton—Kevin has helped to raise greater awareness about the importance of blood donation and he recruits new donors.

Volunteer

Seeing patients receive blood transfusions has given Nathan a good understanding about the importance of a stable blood supply. He is so passionate about donating blood that he has often recruited groups of friends to share the experience by giving together. Nathan’s commitment to what he calls this life-saving society started in high school and has continued throughout university.

Volunteer

Jim and Barb truly care about their community, and make sure that everyone attending a collection event in Truro has a wonderful experience. They are well-known for keeping the refreshment area well stocked with treats. The amount of cookies, juice, jelly beans and other items enjoyed by donors is staggering, and Jim and Barb supply these extras out of the goodness of their hearts.

Donor

Gord has a commitment to saving lives that is inspirational for others. Following in the footsteps of his father who was a frequent donor throughout his life, Gord began donating platelets only five days after his 17th birthday.

Donor

Andrew is a devoted plasma donor, whose service to his country and passion for helping others is epitomized in a framed Canadian flag that hangs in the Edmonton collection site. He donated the flag, which flew over Canada House in Kabul, Afghanistan, after he returned home from his 2011 deployment, where he helped with rebuilding efforts. Andrew had the flag dedicated to Canadian Blood Services’ plasmapheresis program in honour of those who give support for the men and women of the Canadian Forces.

Donor

In 2016, Ken and his wife Nora were grieved by the sudden and unexpected passing of their eldest child, Duncan, at only 21 years of age. As a way to work through his grief, Ken committed himself to the things he felt most important in life – keeping fit and giving back to his community. Ken has been a blood donor in high school, but he wanted to give more. He became a weekly plasma donor in honour of Duncan.

Donor

Inspired as a child by seeing his mother’s blood donor card, David was fascinated by the idea of preserving a life simply by making a blood donation. His mother passed away this spring, and David takes comfort that she knew about his selection as an honouree this year.

Stem Cell Donor

Gregg, a long-time blood and plasma donor, registered to be a stem cell donor in 1997. It would not be until the next millennium that he was identified as a match for a patient. Gregg never hesitated to accommodate the transplant centre’s urgent timelines although he worked full-time and had to travel 2.5 hours to Halifax for the required pre-donation medical workup.

Stem Cell Donor

In 2016, Freda donated stem cells, both peripherally and by bone marrow, to the same patient. Freda lives in a remote area of P.E.I., where just getting to the airport in Charlottetown before flying to Halifax and then traveling to the collection centre is a lengthy journey. When the additional request for stem cells was made, Freda was leaving to B.C. for vacation.

Cord Blood Donor

As a mother, Chan knows all about the miracle of life, but as a registered nurse, she also knows that a baby’s umbilical cord is rich with bloodforming cells that can help save a life. Chan works in the labour and delivery department at the Alberta Health Services’ Lois Hole Hospital for Women in Edmonton.

Living Organ Donor

Stephen has always believed in service to others and in giving back. His decision to become someone’s anonymous kidney donor through the Kidney Paired Donation program was an ideal way to act on those convictions. He was inspired by a friend who donated a kidney to her father; however, at the heart of Stephen’s decision was the question, “If not me, then who?”

National Employee Award of Distinction

Kelly Easter, the Living Our Values winner for Ontario and Nunavut, is a quality assurance associate in Brampton, Ontario. A 30-year employee, Kelly is recognized as a knowledgeable and confident leader. During her tenure working in Canada’s blood system, Kelly has demonstrated a positive attitude towards change, development, and opportunity. She is dedicated to living our quality policy.

The Schilly Award

An ambassador for the blood system, Erin has made incredible contributions to the Canadian blood system through volunteer efforts and her role as a journalist/anchor with CTV Edmonton. Every October since 2010, Erin has spearheaded the CTV Giving Hope campaign, where viewers and employees are encouraged to give blood. Each week during the campaign, Erin and her crew produce a feature story that highlights an aspect of the blood system, such as cord blood, stem cells, and organs and tissues, told from the perspectives of donors, recipients and those in health care and research.

Lifetime Achievement Award

One of Canada’s top public policy observers and commentators, André Picard has provided many years of compelling thought leadership on a multitude of policy and performance matters across our complex health system. He is the health columnist at The Globe and Mail, where he has been a staff writer since 1987. He is also a celebrated author of five bestselling books, including his latest, Matters of Life and Death, in which he tackles some of the nation’s most pressing public health topics. His sentinel book, The Gift of Death, established his voice as one of credibility and authority in the troubled years of the Canadian blood system, and has continued to guide and influence many ever since.

Recipient Speaker

When he was only eight months old, Ryder Robinson was diagnosed with a disease rare in infants, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). With approximately only 30 new cases diagnosed in North America per year, he embarked on ten months of intense treatment, including blood and platelet transfusions. At the age of two, Ryder relapsed while still on oral chemotherapy and had to undergo additional rounds of treatment. His treatment eliminated the cancer cells, but also many of his healthy blood cells. This again made Ryder dependent on many blood and platelet transfusions and ultimately a bone marrow transplant which saved his life.

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