Thu, Apr 18, 2024 4:00 PM

Firing up for cancer fundraiser climb


William Woodworth

Blenheim volunteer firefighters are putting in the hard yards to raise funds for Kiwis living with blood cancer.

Cade Grice, Gordon Munn, George Hopkins, and Troy Gambell have been climbing staircases across Blenheim at 5am since February for the 20th anniversary of the Firefighter Sky Tower Challenge this May 18.

And the crew of four are set to show their efforts locally, hoping to raise both awareness and funds.

Team captain Cade Grice says being a volunteer firefighter isn’t only about emergencies, but helping whenever they can.

“For our cohesive team, volunteerism isn’t solely about responding to emergencies.

“We feel our role in the community is also focused on support, awareness, and prevention to a variety of causes and wherever we can make a difference, at the expense of our own blood, sweat and tears I might add.”

George Hopkins, Jody Jansen van Vuuren, Gordon Munn, Oliver Phipps and Cade Grice. Photo: William Woodworth

Finding the time to train has sometimes been a juggling act for the team, some of whom are also training for the UFBA Firefighters’ Challenge.

But with the cardio component a boost for their work and both challenges, it just makes sense, Grice says.

Leukaemia and Blood Cancer New Zealand relies on donations to top up limited government funding, and he says that the battle they go through with their climbing efforts is all worthwhile.

“Contributions, both physically and financially through donations, by the New Zealand Firefighter community, and international competitors, assists in LBCNZ to provide support to patients and their families of the eight children and adults diagnosed with leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma in New Zealand each day.”

“With the help of the Blenheim community, we hope that the difference in our fundraising strategy helps in making a difference in the lives of those who really need it.”

Head along to Stadium 2000 on Sunday April 28 to support the team while they train in full firefighting kit. There will be a chance to make a donation to LBCNZ then too.

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