Ask any wife or partner of a man who has just been diagnosed with prostate cancer and they will tell you that this cancer is not just the man’s issue, it is a family diagnosis. Island Prostate Centre has been helping local men and their families for more than 17 years. We directly support them through this journey as they navigate their cancer diagnosis, educate themselves on treatment options, and ultimately support them right through to recovery.
Just ask Terri Heit – She’ll tell you that when her husband Mike got an advanced cancer diagnosis after visiting IPC’s Country Grocer Men’s Health Day, she shared equally in the anxiety and fear of what this would mean for Mike and her. Listen here to their story that was shared on CHEK News in September.
Terri told us that Mike wasn’t the only one who benefited from IPC’s supportive programmes.
“When Mike was first diagnosed, I just didn’t know where to start. I didn’t know anything about prostate cancer or how to help. When we made our first appointment, the nurse spent nearly 2 hours with us which was so helpful because we were completely overwhelmed. And I can’t say enough about the presentations at the Support Group – it is such good information and there are a whole bunch of people there going through the exact same thing.
What makes me feel secure is knowing that Mike is getting the help and information he needs. I find it personally assuring that IPC can give Mike the specific support he needs in addition to what I can give him.”
Island Prostate Centre has been helping Vancouver Island men and their families for more than 17 years, and we do this without the benefit of health authority funding or grants from any level of government. Even those very public fundraising initiatives that involve facial hair growing and shaving during the month of November leave the island and do not benefit Vancouver Island men with prostate cancer who need the help of our Centre.
More than ever, Island Prostate Centre needs your help! Please support our fundraising campaign by realizing the importance of giving where you live.
GIVE WHERE YOU LIVE
November is here – that time of year when donors like you help us to raise the funds that will fuel next year’s work at our Centre. Lots of people will get involved in facial hair growing challenges this month but did you know that none of those dollars support the programs and services at Island Prostate Centre? A portion of the funds that are raised by the organization (that rhymes with November) are distributed as far as Australia but Vancouver Island men with prostate cancer who visit IPC do not benefit.
Surprising, right? Tell your friends!
IPC has been helping local men and their families, every month of the year for more than 17 years. We directly support them while they navigate their cancer diagnosis, treatment options, and ultimate prognosis.
Island Prostate Centre needs your help! Please support our fundraising campaign by giving where you live.
This is Rick’s Story
Learning that I have prostate cancer and that it had spread in my body was the worst day of my life. I had immediate surgery and still have a long road ahead as I finish hormone treatment and move on to 33 sessions of radiation. I’ve experienced some really low moments.
Island Prostate Centre was here to help me.
When I decided to attend my first Prostate Cancer Support Group meeting, I was in a pretty bad place. I was completely overwhelmed and to make it worse, I couldn’t help but notice that I was the youngest guy in the room. I received excellent support that helped me to realize that my job right now is to take time for self care and healing. I’ll do anything I can to be well again – I am way too young to think about not being here.
I’m feeling hopeful as I move through my prostate cancer treatment. And it’s great to be back on my Harley again! I still have an uphill battle with some pretty serious treatment ahead, but I know that Island Prostate Centre will continue to be here for me.
Please help other men on Vancouver Island by making a donation or by taking advantage of the Free Wills program like I did. Please, just do whatever you can. Island Prostate Centre accomplishes all that they do with support from donors like you and me. Take my word for it, they’ve been my lifesaver!
Prostate Cancer Warrior
Mike Heit, PhD, is a 71-year-old retired professional economist who lives a very healthy lifestyle and is pro-active about his health by getting lots of exercise, eating well and making time for annual medical checkups.
Mike typically attends Island Prostate Centre’s Country Grocer Men’s Health Day every year but missed two concurrent years. Mike returned to Men’s Health Day in 2016 for a PSA test and was surprised to learn that his PSA level had increased significantly. Mike knew he was in trouble and got an immediate referral to a Urologist.
Mike’s Urologist arranged a series of urgent testing – a CT scan, an MRI, a biopsy and another PSA test after which Mike learned that he is in the top 3 percentile risk for aggressive prostate cancer. His urologist advised him that without treatment, he would have a life expectancy of less than 1.5 years!
Prostate cancer patients are expected to take an active role in their treatment decisions and this is where IPC can help. Mike conferred with IPC’s Support Nurse and explored our onsite lending library in addition to visiting the public library, local book stores and reading journals on the internet. Prostate cancer treatment is unique in that optional treatments relative to ones’ risk are presented and only then does the patient make the final decision. Mike is still exploring his treatment options and will likely augment hormone (ADT) therapy and both external beam and brachytherapy radiation.
In prostate cancer research, exercise has been identified as a lifestyle factor that may reduce risk and provide benefit during treatment. As a cycling enthusiast, Mike logs over 6000 kms a year and hits the gym twice a week. Despite undergoing current ADT therapy, he is surprised that his performance levels have dropped only slightly and he continues to train at a high level. Given that exercise is encouraged to mitigate the side effects of cancer treatment, Mike finds great benefit in his favorite activity.
Mike attends IPC’s Prostate Cancer Support Group on the second Tuesday of every month and participates in the weekly volunteer led walking group at IPC as he navigates his way through his treatment options.
“Given my very aggressive cancer, my treatment options are narrower than most. I have every reason to encourage men to know the early signs of prostate cancer and get an annual PSA test either with your GP or by visiting Country Grocer Men’s Health Day every September.”
As a locally owned independent small business, BPM knows the importance of giving back to our community. We’ve chosen Island Prostate Centre as our charity of choice, which we support throughout the year.
My family knows, first-hand, how important it is to have support when faced with a prostate cancer diagnosis. My husband, James, an avid mountain biker, has always been proactive about his health by staying active and making healthy nutritional choices (he’s a pescatarian). We knew that prostate cancer was in his family, but we were no less frightened when James was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2010. Island Prostate Centre is the place to go to find information and support when navigating the various treatment options for prostate cancer. Click here to see all of the IPC programs available.
BPM has chosen to support Island Prostate Centre by taking donations at Karma classes at our local spin studio so that men and their families can get the help they need. We were also active participants at the Raymond James Father’s Day Walk/Run by providing prizing for individual fundraisers. Even our instructors get in on community engagement – our BPM instructor Hannah volunteered her time at the run to lead the warm up for the participants! As a small business, don’t think that you can’t make a difference!
When caught and treated early, prostate cancer has a 90 – 95% survival rate! At BPM we encourage you to eat well, stay active and know your PSA numbers.
Yours in good health,
Sally Larrington-Brown (Owner)
If you have signed up already, there is still time to raise some extra funds! Check out these great fundraising incentive prizes!
Your name is entered to win a fully installed Shaw PVR.
Remaining packages will be available at the Registration Tent on event day.
Thanks to Raymond James, 100% of the money raised will fund the free programs and services provided by Island Prostate Centre.
Last summer, I had the delight of spending two weeks cycling through South Korea with my daughter. She lives a world away, in Edinburgh, so it was special that we could share an activity that we both love. It reminded me of the sailing trips I used to have with my Dad; we were both passionate about sailing!
My Dad died far too young, of prostate cancer. Dad had the aggressive kind that eventually spread to his back, which made it difficult for him to walk . . . and sail. My Dad’s generation didn’t talk about prostate cancer. It was widely believed that prostate cancer was something you didn’t treat. The popular belief is that men die with prostate cancer, not from it.
If my Dad had access to awareness and screening programs at an organization like Island Prostate Centre, he might have been diagnosed and treated earlier and we could have had many more adventures together.
I met a man recently, I’ll call him Adam. Adam had important life work to finish but he could only work on it for one week in every three. The other two weeks he was too sick from his chemo treatments. Adam is now fighting for his life because of prostate cancer. His family and friends are asking why he didn’t get it checked before it was too late. Adam is asking himself the same question. My Dad was the same, he didn’t get checked.
It’s stories like this that motivate me to actively volunteer and support Island Prostate Centre in every way I can. As an active volunteer on IPC’s Board of Directors, I see many men who are empowered to make informed quality of life decisions about their prostate health. This is why I support IPC monthly, belong to the Gifts of Five Circle, have sponsored the Raymond James Father’s Day Walk/Run through my business of Serenity Home Care and have signed up as a fundraising runner for the last 5 years.
I know that as a son of a father who had prostate cancer, I need to keep a close eye on things. With early detection, prostate cancer can be treated before it spreads. This is where Island Prostate Centre comes in. Island Prostate Centre provides free PSA tests, educates men on the importance of getting checked regularly and supports men and their families who are facing a diagnosis.
Island Prostate Centre is here to prevent stories like Adam’s and my Dad’s.
Island Prostate Centre does not charge for its service and does not receive government funding. On June 18th I will be running in the Raymond James Father’s Day Run for Prostate Cancer because if you can’t run from it, run for it! Please join me!
To register for the Raymond James Father’s Day Walk / Run – click here
To make a donation to IPC – click here
To volunteer – click here
For sponsorship opportunities click here
Thank you to our generous sponsors.