The Canadian Cancer Society turns 75 today!

28 March 2013


To highlight both the Canadian Cancer Society’s 75th anniversary and the 2013 edition of the Relay For Life, the CCS has produced a video-relay called, Pour moi, la vie, c’est… (available in French only), made up of 75 testimonials by Quebec celebrities.

This unique video was released this morning in the presence of cancer survivors, volunteers, employees, and researchers funded by CCS as well as several personalities who participated in the video. Every 11 minutes, a Quebecer hears the words: “You have cancer.” By inviting 75 Quebec celebrities to relay a message about life, the CCS wanted to show all those who were or are living with cancer that a whole community is behind them in their battle against the disease.

“Watching this video-relay, relaying it to friends and family, and taking part in one of the Relay For Life events are concrete ways of getting involved against cancer and offering support to all those who are touched by the disease,” says Suzanne Dubois, Executive Director of the CCS – Quebec Division. To watch the video:

Short version :

Long version :

Since its very first edition in Quebec back in 2001, which helped us collect $45,000, the Relay For Life has raised more than $75M. “Today, it’s the biggest fundraising event in the country,” says Alain Deschamps, Director of Operations at the CCS – Quebec Division. “Its success in Quebec has enabled the CCS to almost double its investments in research, prevention, and support in the last decade to reach more than $21M last year.”

Participants walk and relay around a track for an entire night from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. the next morning to raise money to fight cancer. Each Relay For Life is a celebration of life: tents are pitched and decorated for the occasion; there’s also music, food, activities and entertainment. Teams of 10, each formed by colleagues, parents, and friends, celebrate cancer survivors and remember those who lost their battle and those who are still affected by the disease.

The recrutment of participants and teams for the Relay For Life events that will take place in May and June 2013 as well as the sale of luminaries (at $5 apiece) are underway on You can also join the conversation on Twitter at #WhyIRelay.

“On March 28, 1938, the Canadian Cancer Society was born thanks to the initiative of the Canadian Medical Association and provincial groups. Its original mandate was to create awareness among the population of the early signs of cancer. Since then, the CCS has always had the support of Quebecers and is today the leading charity fighting against cancer,” adds Ms. Dubois. “Although our 75th anniversary is an occasion to celebrate the many victories against cancer, there is still a lot to do.”  

Key figures for the 2013 Relay For Life in Quebec:


  • 50,000 participants will celebrate life!
  • 87 events will take place across Quebec.
  • 230,000 luminaries will be lit up.
  • $13.7 million: the CCS’s target.

A donation to the CCS’ Relay for Life can:


  • Fund innovative research projects that save lives: to date, the CCS has invested more than 1.2 billion in this field.
  • Provide up-to-date and reliable information on cancer — more than one million requests from all over the country have been processed by the Cancer Information Service since its inception — and offer support services to the community.
  • Support people touched by cancer through the comforting services offered by Cancer J’écoute and the Jacques-Cantin Lodge.
  • Create prevention programs such as the Thingamaboob to remind women about the need for regular cancer screening, SMAT (Short Messages Against Tobacco) to help young people quit smoking, the Trottibus Walking School Bus to promote walking among young children, or the Sun Squads, which, last summer, taught 36,000 young Quebecers how to protect themselves from UV rays.
  • Advocate for better laws and public policies from the government to protect Quebecers’ health. Here’s a good example in Quebec: with the support of CCS volunteers, some 60,000 signatures were gathered for a petition which led to the passage of Bill 74 to prevent skin cancer caused by artificial tanning. The Act to prevent skin cancer caused by artificial tanning came into force on February 11, 2013.

For 75 years, the Canadian Cancer Society has been with Canadians in the fight for life. All these years, we have been relentless in our commitment to prevent cancer, fund research, and support people touched by the disease. From this foundation, we will work with Canadians to change cancer forever so fewer Canadians are diagnosed with the disease and more survive. To know more about cancer, visit our website at or call our Cancer Information Service at 1 888 939-3333.

The Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) is the only national charity that supports Canadians with all cancers in communities across the country. No other organization does what we do; we are the voice for Canadians who care about cancer. We fund groundbreaking research, provide a support system for all those affected by cancer and advocate to governments for important social change.

Help us make a difference. Call 1-888-939-3333 or visit today.

For more information, please contact:

André Beaulieu

Spokesperson and Senior Advisor, Public Relations

Canadian Cancer Society

Quebec Division

Phone: (514) 393-3444