The Marc Normandeau Fund
The Marc Normandeau Fund was established in 2008, with a goal of raising funds for the Oncology Ward at the Montreal Children's Hospital; where I have spent almost a third of my childhood fighting leukemia. The excellent care by the medical staff at the MCH and the gratitude that came as a result is the backbone of the fund. Since it's creation, we have had one concrete goal; and that is to be able to purchase item(s) that would benefit not only the children who were battling cancer, but the parents and the medical staff as well.
It started out as a small initiative, beginning with silicone bracelets which read "Marc's All Star Team". They were initially meant as a means of support and were created by two of my friends' mothers. Within a few days, we had sold out the first batch and we needed to place new orders quickly, to comply with demand. The first couple of months were marked by community support. They began chipping in and raising money through various types of events; including softball tournaments, piano recitals, donations from birthday parties and others.
Most of these fundraisers were from strangers in my community who had heard of my story and had dedicated their time to raising money for my family and I's fund. With the collaboration of my community, we had raised a very substantial amount of money within the first year.
Once my treatments of my second battle had come to an end in 2010, my family and I had more time to focus on raising money ourselves. Our first independent and most successful fundraiser in the fund's history was a celebrity golf tournament that we hosted in August of 2010, where we raised over $53,000.
As the years have progressed and I’ve grown older, I have passionately taken over the responsibilities and operations of the fund. I hosted my first fundraiser back in August of 2015, a volleyball tournament which raised over $2,300. From there, we have had several smaller events that have added to our overall collection tally of just under $100,000.
The goal of the fund today has remained the same with an adjustment in the vision of where the money will be allocated. As the years have passed, I have decided to dedicate it towards one of two things; a piece of medical equipment or new innovative cancer immunology therapies. Ultimately, either one of these choices would be improving the lives of the children, the families and the medical staff.
It may be a far shot and one that might not happen in the near future, but I want to see a world without the need to use chemotherapy or radiation to treat people, especially children. I want to be a little piece of the puzzle to bring an end to these torturous treatments, and fund the necessary research to be able to provide new treatments with more manageable side effects.
Whether it be $1, $100 or $1000, every bit of money counts. Help me help these kids who are battling day in and day out to be able to live their lives.