April 27 is Canadian Cancer Society’s Daffodil Day

26 April 2013

Toronto -

Tomorrow on Daffodil Day thyroid cancer survivor Tim Hampson will be proudly wearing a daffodil pin to show his support for people living with cancer.

 “The message I would give to people facing cancer is to reach out and let others help you,” says Tim. “You can’t do this by yourself. The support and information I received from others helped me enormously.”

Daffodil Day – Saturday, April 27 – helps wrap up the Canadian Cancer Society’s Daffodil Campaign. It is a special day where Canadians can reflect upon the thousands of people who are on a cancer journey or do something special for a person with cancer. The Society encourages Canadians to wear its daffodil pin on this day as a symbol of hope and unity in the fight against cancer. To find out where to get a pin go to fightback.ca or contact your local Society office.

Shortly after being diagnosed in 2011, 41-year-old Tim researched his condition on the internet and found a link to the Canadian Cancer Society’s CancerConnection.ca online community of cancer patients, survivors and caregivers. Tim signed on to this community where members take part in discussions, write their own blogs, and exchange messages offering emotional support and advice.

“When a community member responds to you and shows interest in what you wrote, it goes a long way,” says Tim who lives in Lasalle, Ontario. “It gives you a feeling you are not alone, even if you are hundreds of kilometres away from the person.”

Feeling isolated
Being a member of the CancerConnection.ca community was especially meaningful to Tim during his treatment in February 2012. Tim was feeling isolated as he was sitting in a lead-lined hospital room after receiving radioactive iodine therapy. For three days visitors and hospital staff were not allowed into the room as the treatment had temporarily made Tim a source of radiation.

While in hospital, Tim connected with the CancerConnection.ca community and gave a play-by-play account of his time in isolation. Other thyroid cancer patients and survivors posted messages of support.

“The best part of CancerConnection.ca is interacting with people who really understand your situation,” says Tim. “Your loved ones are supportive but they can’t relate 100 per cent to what you are going through.”

Tim had to endure another week of isolation after being discharged from the hospital in order to protect his wife and young children from any residual radiation. Tim came up with a creative solution by parking the family’s camper in their driveway and arranging WiFi access so he could continue to connect with the online community members.

“The messages of support were immensely meaningful for me and I also found that writing about what was happening helped me through the experience,” explains Tim. “As I was writing, I was hoping that it would be beneficial to someone down the road. It gave me a reason for going through this cancer experience. I wanted to help others.”

Cancer free
Tim is now cancer free and his experience has inspired him to support others facing the same journey by  continuing to be an active member of CancerConnection.ca. He has a clear message for anyone facing cancer: “Learn all you can. Do all you can. Share all you can.”

“Do not hide where nobody can find you,” says Tim. “Others are there to help you navigate the unknown.”

Pamela Fralick, President and CEO, Canadian Cancer Society says that wearing a daffodil pin on this special day provides a visible symbol of support for all cancer survivors. “Every three minutes another Canadian is faced with fighting cancer and the Society wants them to know that they are not alone. Tim’s story is only one example of how the Society is working to ensure that people living with cancer get the support they need.”

On Daffodil Day, Tim will be encouraging his friends and family to wear the Society’s daffodil pin to show their support for people living with cancer.

To donate online or to find out where you can get a daffodil pin, go to fightback.ca or contact your local Society office.  The pins are also available at participating locations of: Canlan Ice Sports; Cogeco; Golf Canada; JACOB; Laura; LifeLabs; Mortgage Alliance; Pharmasave; Running Room; Wirelesswave; and Tbooth Wireless. We also welcome the Business Development Bank of Canada as a daffodil pin partner.

This year is the Society’s 75th anniversary and the organization invites Canadians to mark this occasion by making a donation. By supporting the Canadian Cancer Society, Canadians will be joining a team that works hard to fight cancer in Canada. Your donation will help the Society:

  • fund excellent research to outsmart cancer;
  • provide information and deliver programs and services to prevent cancer and to support people living with cancer, their families and caregivers;
  • advocate on behalf of Canadians on important health and cancer issues.

CancerConnection/ParlonsCancer.ca is a safe and welcoming online community cancer patients and caregivers to share their experiences and build relationships to support them in their cancer journey. It  helps people with cancer and caregivers connect and share with each other and with the Canadian Cancer Society.

For 75 years the Canadian Cancer Society has been with Canadians in the fight for life. We have been relentless in our commitment to prevent cancer, fund research and support Canadians touched by cancer. From this foundation, we will work with Canadians to change cancer forever so fewer Canadians are diagnosed with the disease and more survive. When you want to know more about cancer, visit our website at cancer.ca or call our toll-free bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1 888 939-3333; TTY, 1 866 786-3934.

We invite Canadians to visit our 75th anniversary microsite at www.cancer.ca/75years to learn more about how the impact we have made has changed the course of cancer in Canada.

For more information, please contact:

Brooke Kelly

Communications Coordinator

Canadian Cancer Society

National office

Phone: 416-934-5321