COPS FOR CANCER: The power of many

Oak Bay High students band together to support Tour de Rock

Grade 12 Oak Bay High Cops For Cancer campaign leaders Liam McDonough

Grade 12 Oak Bay High Cops For Cancer campaign leaders Liam McDonough

As the 2011 Canadian Cancer Society’s Cops for Cancer Tour de Rock draws near, fundraising activities at Oak Bay High are kicking into high gear.

Students have planned a wide range of activities which start today (Sept.15) and continue through Oct. 6, when the tour riders roll into the school.

“We have a lot this year,” said supervising teacher Chad Jacques. “This is the biggest group of students that we’ve ever had working on the project.”

The campaign started with a dunk tank yesterday and things really get rolling Saturday (Sept. 17), when the school holds an eight-hour relay fashioned after Easter Seals’ 24-hour Relay for the Kids held annually at the University of Victoria.

As in that event, at least one member of each team – there are 10 taking part – must be going around the track at all times.

At the same time, teammates take part in a variety of fun competitions against other teams.

Other fundraising events planned include clothing and bottle drives, a dodgeball tournament and a silent auction.

And of course, no student fundraiser is complete without a little good-natured teacher humiliation.

“Head shave day is Sept. 29 and that’s a lot of fun,” said Danica Robirtis, one of three student co-ordinators leading the campaign. “Teachers get pied (in the face) and men wax their legs, which is pretty hilarious to watch.”

All proceeds from the Oak Bay High events will be donated to Camp Goodtimes, a facility in Maple Ridge where children with cancer and their siblings can have a summer camp experience.

Last year, the school contributed $43,000 to the camp through its various fundraising initiatives.

This year, they’ve set a monetary target of $20,000, but the students are more focused on their goal of sending 15 kids to camp.

“We’re more fixated on the kids this year,” Robirtis said. “It costs a little over $1,000 to get a kid to camp, so that’s where we got our total.”

Coming at the beginning of the school year, the campaign serves as a way of bringing the student body together, she said.

“It is a lot of work, but the kids at Oak Bay, they’re unbelievable. They’ll bend over backwards to help out.”

Added Jacques: “It’s neat because you get to see students doing it for their friend or their aunt or their grandma or their dad. It effects more people than you think, and the response that they get is pretty impressive and admirable.”

Mark your calendar

Sept. 17: Eight-hour relay at Oak Bay High track (behind Oak Bay Rec Centre at the end of Goldsmith Street). The relay starts at 10 a.m.

Sept. 24: Bottle drive. Save your returnable bottles and cans for students, who will be going door-to-door to collect.

Oct. 6: Tour de Rock visit to Oak Bay High. The students will reveal the total amount of money raised and present a cheque to the riders to go toward Camp Goodtimes.