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L.A. Beat

Local artists helping families help fight cancer with art exhibit

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Local artists are helping local  families help battle cancer with the second annual art show at the Galt Museum, May 27. Childhood cancer survivor Carie Stock started the organization “Helping Families,” eight years ago, holding several events including a Calgary Helping Families Art show, eight years ago and decided to bring the event to Lethbridge last year.

“I’m a childhood cancer survivor and I remember how hard it was for my mom when I was fighting cancer,” Stock said, noting the money raised goes to families to help cover things like parking fees, ambulance fees, utilities, medication and time spent away from jobs to care for a child for cancer.

“Alberta health care covers a lot, but it doesn’t cover specialty expenses,” she said, adding that is where Helping Families is able to help out.
“We’ve been doing the event for the past eight years in Calgary and it has been so successful, we decided to bring it to Lethbridge,” she continued.
 The event will feature works from 100 southern Alberta artists.

“They are all from Southern Alberta. One is from Magrath. Most of them are paintings, acrylic and oil and photographs, because those are the best for an event like this,” she said.
“This year will be a milestone for us. We’ll have raised $500,000. So we’re excited about reaching that goal. Now we can focus on the next goal which is $1 million,” she said.

“We’re excited about it,” she said.
In addition to the art and  appetizers, the Helping Families exhibit also includes live music from local musician Julia Daminato, live art being created by Kaitlyn Villenuve, performances by the Gymfinty Aerials and guest speaker, cancer  survivor and medal winning weight lifter Alyssa Fraser.


“ She’s one of the families we helped. She had a rare form of hip cancer (pseudomyogenic hemangioendothelioma) , but she didn’t let that slow her down. She’s so inspirational. She’s a weightlifter who has won all kinds of medals.
She needed a special kind of medication which cost $1,700 per month. That’s as much as two mortgages. It wasn’t covered because it isn’t usually used for cancer, but her doctor decided it would help,” she said.

“Her social worker stepped in and introduced her to us. Parents shouldn’t have to worry about trying to cover the  cost of medication. they should just be able to worry about being there for Alyssa, so we paid for it,” Stock said, noting all of the money raised in Lethbridge stays in Lethbridge to help Lethbridge families. So far they have helped 125 Lethbridge families.
The Helping Families Art Exhibit runs 6-9 p.m. at the Galt Museum. Tickets are $25 each or $100 for a package of four.

— By Richard Amery, L.A Beat Editor
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