Hope is the common thread that weaves the brain tumour community together. Each year, we celebrate hope by presenting our top team and individual fundraisers from the Brain Tumour Walk with the coveted Cup of Hope.
2023’s Individual Cup of Hope Champion
Dave Fleischer, of Kitchener, Ont., received this year’s individual Cup of Hope for raising an incredible $30,000 during this year’s Kitchener-Waterloo Brain Tumour Walk. He’d initially pledged to donate $10,000 through the Kitchener-Waterloo (KW) Civitan Club, though fellow Civitan Club members chipped in to raise the total donation to $30,000. Given that Dave was diagnosed with a Grade 2 meningioma brain tumour in early 2022, he and the club wanted to lend their support to a cause that had hit close to home.
“I never put it out there to be the top fundraiser,” Dave says, “but I’m pretty happy and proud that we were able to contribute what we did.”
Dave headed Team Idaho, which gained its moniker after the nickname Dave gave to his brain tumour.
“I called it Idaho,” he says, “because it looked like a big potato.”
Dave and his team had t-shirts made with names on the back, honouring two people who passed away from brain cancer and two who were battling it at the time, but have since passed away as well.
“There were about a dozen of us that did the Walk,” Dave says. “I met some people I’d connected with on social media, and then there were people I’d known from years ago. It was nice to see everyone come together to support the cause.”
2023’s Team Cup of Hope Champion
Mal Chamberlain’s #1 Fans scored this year’s team Cup of Hope, surpassing their $40,000 goal and raising more than $46,250.
“If it wasn’t for the countless people Mal has positively impacted through her community—from coaching, teaching, being a role model in her community, and being an outstanding friend and member of her family—we wouldn’t have been able to rally all the support that we did,” says Kelly Gordon, close friend to Mal.
Kelly, along with friends Denise Shore and Olivia Carapella, joined forces to organize a team for the London Brain Tumour Walk.
“At the time of the Walk, I had just finished six weeks of chemo and radiation,” says Mal, who was diagnosed with a Grade 3 anaplastic astrocytoma tumour in early 2023. “After tiring weeks of treatment and managing symptoms, the Walk was such an inspiring and encouraging event from start to finish.”
Mal bravely stood on stage at the event, telling her story while looking out to a sea of people wearing her favourite colour, yellow.
“I fought back tears of pure thankfulness and hope,” says Mal. “Upon leaving the stage, I was surprised by my partner, who was kneeling with a ring in his hand.”
It was a day for the memory books, and one that made a major impact on the brain tumour community.
“The awareness, sense of community, and support that the Walk provided and continues to provide will always be acknowledged in my journey,” says Mal. “And I will certainly be back next year to continue the cancer fight!”
Top Individual Fundraisers – Runners Up
Top Team Fundraisers – Runners Up
We would like to give our sincere thanks to everyone who participated in this year’s Brain Tumour Walk and who supports our mission to spread hope year-round.