Monday, February 12, 2007

Raising Awareness

Saturday was declared A Day Of Eastern Star. The Order of the Eastern Star is a group that I belong to. There are chapters all over the world. Saturday, every chapter in BC had a promotional day to raise awareness of what we, the OES does.

This is Spinoza Bear. He is a talking bear that we give to children with cancer. So far we have bought 60 of these bears for sick kids in BC.

To raise money, we have raffles and dinners, pub nights etc.

Another project is our Cancer dressings, which we pay for by collecting stamps. These pics are of my chapter doing a demonstration in the mall to enlighten people to what we do. There was a photographer there from The Times Newspaper, watch for us, we may be famous!!!! Knowing kids like Kayla, Raven and Ronnie are out there suffering, allows me to really belive that this is such a worthwhile cause!
"Cancer is an evil disease but never more than when it roots itself in a child. The miracle is the depth of courage and strength we see in those children who suffer from it. In recent years, health professionals treating children stricken with cancer have noticed a remarkable phenomenon. It is possible for a child to transfer their pain, fear and emotional anguish to a large toy bear known as a Spinoza Bear.
Spinoza is a VERY large bear - almost as big as the child itself. Unlike other toy bears, however, Spinoza is not only soft and cuddly, but he has a voice, and can speak to the child. The "voice" comes from audiotapes planted inside, that can be activated by the child twisting a red knob right over Spinoza's heart. Thus the two of them, bear and child, can have a conversation together. Spinoza can suggest a walk together or maybe just to sit and hug. When the child has to have a shot, or chemo or any form of treatment, Spinoza has it too, sharing in all the experiences his 'friend' has.
Each bear costs $300, and our goal is to match up as many Spinozas as we can with kids who have cancer. Chapters may be able to identify a local child who is a victim of cancer, and 'adopt’ her or him. In addition to donating money to the purchase, we encourage you to get involved in this way where possible, reaching out the hand of love and caring.
The second part of the Worthy Grand Matron’s project of 2006-7 focuses on a different facet of the fight against cancer.
Patients' blood samples, like tissue samples, provide vital information about cancers: the ways and speed with which a particular tumor grows, how the tumor responds or doesn't respond to various treatments, and of course, the long term implications for the patient's health. Once the sample is taken, the results are linked to the patient's basic demographic information. In order to treat each cancer patient, doctors need to compare blood and tissue samples over a period of time. Thus the doctor can establish which treatment is working and what effect it has on the patient.
For this reason, there is a great need for a freezer in which to store the samples. Unfortunately the $395.00 Sears Special freezer will not do the job. What is required is no ordinary freezer, far from it. It is, in fact, a state-of-the-art freezer using liquid nitrogen, and as such has capability of reaching sub-zero temperatures as low as 150 degrees below zero. It must have a huge capacity to store thousands of samples and at the same time be totally reliable. This is accomplished by wiring it directly into special alarm and maintenance systems. To be a crucial key in the research process, the samples may have to be stored many years.
The projected benefit for patients is that the quality of treatments administered will be tailored individually for each patient. Researchers in British Columbia are world - class, and this amazing liquid nitrogen sub-zero freezer will be an integral part of their efforts, by endorsing the purchase of this freezer, we will take one more giant step forward in our fight against cancer.
Cancer Dressings
The members of British Columbia & Yukon, Order of the Eastern Star, make and provide Cancer Dressings, FREE OF CHARGE, for cancer patients throughout the Province. Contact your nearest Chapter of the Eastern Star for more information.
Our Cancer Dressing stations were started in 1947 and have continued ever since. We have Cancer Dressing Stations ithroughout British Columbia including many in hospitals, where dressings are made by our members. Since 1947 there have been over 22 million dressings made, achieved by OES members giving approximately 3,300,000 hours. Last year alone over 150,000 dressing were made and provided free to cancer patients by their doctors.
The money used to purchase the fabric for these dressings is raised by sale of used postage stamps and donations from the Chapters and their members, and distributed free of charge to any cancer patient in need, under referral of their doctor. .
Collection of used Postage Stamps
The members of British Columbia & Yukon, Order of the Eastern Star, collect used POSTAGE STAMPS to raise funds for the purchase of materials to make cancer dressings and other cancer projects including research. In 2005-6 some $14,467.98 was raised from the collection of used stamps. This is a worthwhile venture. If you have any used stamps or postcards with stamp attached (keep the postcard whole with the stamp on) give them to an Eastern Star Chapter near you. Every little bit helps."
Taken from the Order of the Eastern Star Website


Bobbie said...

I read about the stamps in the local paper but never had a chance on Saturday to get down to the mall. Do they have to be current stamps or are old ones acceptable? I have a shoe box full if you'd like them. E-mail me at okay.

That's great work your group does.

Walker said...

Thats great what you and the others are doing.
There is no better cause than investing time in our future and our kids are our future.
Great post

Vickie said...

Thank you for sharing this---I often wondered what this organization did/does. I really had the wrong impression and am glad you set me straight---Carl's aunt is very active and holds some high position/office with them. All I ever knew they did was travel to here her talk and it seemed very much like a clique. Just curious can anyone join or is there a special invite only process?

I am glad to know I had the wrong impression---thanks to you Inow know they do good.:)

ellen said...

Me want a Spinoza bear.

sharon said...

Good for you and everyone who is involved in helping others. We are so overloaded with news about people harming others, it just warms the heart to hear about these organizations of people banding together to help.

Chana said...

what you guys are doing here is a great thing. thank you.

the bears are beautiful too.

leaving you hugs and kisses. best wishes for Kayla and your friend's daughter and to you and yours..say hi to your dad pls..

Heather in Beautiful British Columbia said...

I will start saving stamps tomorrow! Thanks for making me aware of the great cause :)

EMOB said...

You are a beautiful person doing a beautiful thing. Thank you for being so inspiring.