The Kidney Foundation in Sarnia has been holding its Annual Golf Classic since 2001 with the support of a group of committed volunteers, golfers and sponsors.
The event, which is being held June 8 this year, is in honour of a committed staff member and dialysis patient, Christine LaBrasceur, who died suddenly in March 2005 while waiting for a transplant.
Funds raised locally provide services for those suffering from kidney disease, which can strike anyone at any age.
The foundation offers this support through things like education, increasing public awareness, providing short-term financial assistance and raising funds for research.
"Research is incredibly important to our patients," says Terry Lilley, Chair of the Golf Classic Committee of the Sarnia-Lambton Chapter. "That's really what gives them hope of a better future."
When the foundation first began in 1964, it was focused solely on research. "We were only a research foundation because if you had kidney disease in 1964, you died. We had no patient services because we had no patients to support," says Lilley. "Thankfully, because of the research being done, people are living longer lives. We still have a long way to go. Life on dialysis is no picnic, that's for sure, but definitely people are living longer."
"As well, he says, transplant is now the treatment of choice for many patients.
"Still, only about 41 per cent of Canadians who are on renal replacement therapy actually have a transplant. The other 59 per cent are still on some form of dialysis. "On top of the other ways it supports those with kidney disease and their families, the foundation does a lot of advocacy work, says Lilley.
The 12th annual golf classic is being held at Bonnie Doon Golf & Country Club. It's one of the first local events to kick off the golfing season.
The cost is $400 per team of four. This includes driving range, lunch, green fees, a cart, a steak dinner, plus there will be prizes and many great raffle items.
For more information about the golf classic, call Elaine Hayter at 519-344-3462.
Pictured from last year's tournament are participants from Dobbin Transport: David Asling- Snee, Tamara Dobbin, Colin Dobbin, Kristina Dobbin and Dorothy Percival.