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See what we have planned for Melanoma Awareness Month 2022!

This year, Save Your Skin Foundation is running local, national and international campaigns to raise awareness on the importance of prevention and early detection of skin cancers. See a full list of our Melanoma Month initiatives HERE.

 

Press Release

Click here to read the news, April 29, 2022: Save Your Skin Foundation Runs Local, National and International Campaigns to Increase Skin Cancer Awareness During Melanoma Awareness Month

 

A common diagnosis with a rare outcome – Helen’s Story

Almost a decade ago, in 2013, Helen found a spot along her hairline that worried her. Two different doctors told her it was nothing to worry about before a dermatologist recognized it as cancerous and had it removed. And that was that, she was assured. Most skin cancers are easily dealt with and life goes on. But, based on her pathology report, Helen had a feeling that this ordeal was far from over.

It takes a village to stand up to cancer: Helen’s story via Macleans.ca

 

Sty-Lives OPHA Challenge

We have partnered with the Ontario Professional Hairstylist Association (OPHA) to create the Sty-Lives OPHA Challenge, which aims to train 200 hair professionals to detect potential skin cancers by May 31, 2022.

The initiative behind the challenge is Styling Hair & Saving Lives (Sty-Lives). Led by two medical students, with the support of SYSF, it aims to empower and educate hairstylists and barbers to detect suspicious skin lesions on the ears, face and scalp of their clients. Participating salons and barbershops are provided with training materials and resources and are taught how to detect suspicious spots. The purpose of the project is to help facilitate communication between the client and their healthcare provider, leading to earlier detection of potentially dangerous skin cancers.

As of this writing, the Sty-Lives OPHA Challenge has already reached 83% of its recruitment goal.

 

Melanoma Month Apparel

Check out our Melanoma Month Collection of Shirts perfect for the melanoma warrior or supporter in your life. As always, the proceeds from the sale of our SYSF merchandise goes directly towards supporting patients when they need it most. Visit our Etsy Store!

 

Thanks to Giving Hope Gala 2022 Sponsors & Supporters

This year’s pool party-themed gala was a lot of fun. A huge thank you to all who joined us and an even bigger thank you to all our sponsors who donated generously to make this event a success. We’ll have more information on the gala, including lots of pictures, in our next newsletter, so stay tuned!

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Ocumel Canada Seeking Input for Ocular Melanoma Patient Experience Survey

~ Le français suit ~

Ocumel Canada invited all ocular melanoma patients at any stage, whether or not they have been treated with KIMMTRAK® (tebentafusp-tebn) for metastatic OM, to participate in this anonymous survey intended to gather patient/caregiver perspectives to inform treatment recommendations. We were looking for ocular melanoma patients to share their treatment experiences to help inform Save Your Skin Foundation’s treatment recommendations to the CADTH Common Drug Review (CDR) and to pan-Canadian Oncology Drug Review (pCODR).

By providing direct patient feedback we can help inform Canadian government decision-makers of the patient need, and potentially increase treatment options, therefore improving treatment outcomes.

This survey is now closed – stay tuned for the resulting report!

Thank you for your time. Together we can make a difference.

 

Nous invitons tous les patients atteints de mélanome oculaire, quel que soit leur stade, qu’ils aient ou non été traités par KIMMTRAK® (tebentafusp-tebn) pour une MO métastatique, à participer à ce sondage anonyme destiné à recueillir le point de vue des patients et des soignants afin d’élaborer des recommandations de traitement.

En fournissant des commentaires directs des patients, nous pouvons aider à informer les décideurs sur les besoins des patients, et potentiellement augmenter les options de traitement, améliorant ainsi les résultats du traitement.

Nous vous remercions de votre temps. 

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Updates on the Sty-Lives Program

Launched in December 2021, the Styling Hair and Saving Lives – Sty-Lives – program has been a huge hit!  Hair professionals, hair salons, and barbershops all across Canada are registering and using the resources created to help in the early detection of skin cancers. Click HERE to learn more about the free training program and resources, and see below for some of the media coverage the program is getting across Canada and in the U.S.

Recently, we also launched the Sty-Lives OPHA Challenge in partnership with the Ontario Professional Hairstylist Association!  Read more HERE and click HERE to watch the video about the program.

Stay tuned for announcements on additional partnerships we are building!

 

CBC

Global News Radio

CTV News

CHIPCHICK

BeautyCouncil.ca

Good Morning America
ABC News
yahoo!news

Eastlink
NY Post
Castanet Penticton

Squamish Chief
The U.S. Sun
MSN

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SYSF Seeking Input for Melanoma Patient Experience Survey

~ Le français suit ~

We invited all melanoma patients in any stage who received Keytruda™ or other systemic treatment(s) to complete the survey at the link below, intended to gather patient/caregiver perspectives to inform treatment recommendations. Patients sharing their treatment experiences helps inform Save Your Skin Foundation’s treatment recommendations to the CADTH Common Drug Review (CDR) and to pan-Canadian Oncology Drug Review (pCODR).

By providing direct patient feedback we can help inform Canadian government decision-makers of the patient need, and potentially increase treatment options, therefore improving treatment outcomes.

This survey is now closed – stay tuned for the resulting report!

Thank you for your time. Together we can make a difference.

 

Nous invitons tous les patients atteints de mélanome, quel que soit le stade, ayant reçu le Keytruda™ ou un ou plusieurs autres traitements systémiques à répondre à ce sondage, destiné à recueillir le point de vue des patients et des soignants afin d’éclairer les recommandations de traitement.

En fournissant des commentaires directs des patients, nous pouvons aider à informer les décideurs sur les besoins des patients, et potentiellement augmenter les options de traitement, améliorant ainsi les résultats du traitement.

Nous vous remercions de votre temps. 

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Get your tickets for our 2022 Giving Hope Gala: Virtual Pool Party Edition!

Join us for a fun, virtual pool party experience in a custom tropical world created just for us! Again this year, we’ll use an online video chat platform that allows us to connect virtually in a more interactive way. You’ll easily be able to move in and out of conversations like you would in person and take part in fun on-site activities, all while supporting an important cause!

The Gala will take place on Thursday, April 28, 2022 ~ 5-8pm PT, 8-11pm ET

Why Attend

Don’t miss the networking event of the year for the skin cancer community!

In real-time audio and video, you’ll be able to connect with Kathy Barnard and the Save Your Skin team, patients and survivors from across Canada, and cancer care stakeholders, all while raising funds for a great cause.

All you need is a computer with wifi and ear buds, a comfortable place to visit virtually, and your ticket! This virtual event gives you the closest thing to a real life party experience. Enjoy music, entertainment, games and great prizes!

All ticket purchases will receive a charitable donation tax receipt.

Celebrate with us ~ Click HERE to get your tickets!

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A Viking’s Challenge 2022 Recap

A Viking’s Challenge 3rd Edition was last weekend and we couldn’t be happier with how the event unfolded.

In total, 51 people participated, running a combined total of 841 km, or the equivalent of 28 crossings of Lake Winnipeg. Though Chris Isfeld’s cancer recurrence and the side-effects from his treatment made it impossible for him to travel to Gimli, MB and run with Shawn Bjornsson, they were united in spirit, along with the 51 other participants across Canada, by the knowledge that they were helping bring awareness to an important issue. Together, they helped raise over $15,000 this year. And donations are still coming in!

The Weekend in Pictures

From top left: Alan Dann, Shawn Bjornsson and friends in Winnipeg, Shawn Bjornsson and friends in Gimli, Shawn Bjornsson and friends at Ship and Plough Tavern, Rosemary Westie and friends, Shawn Bjornsson and a friend, Shannon Lamb-Lebel, Shawn Bjornsson, Emily Chowne, Genevieve and Summer the dog, Rosemary Westie and friends.

 

Thank You to our Sponsors!

Many thanks to the businesses who generously sponsored “A Viking’s Challenge” this year:

  • Bristol Myers Squibb
  • Gimli Ice Festival
  • Ship and Plough Tavern
  • Lakeview Resort Gimli
  • Designer Closet Guys
  • BE Power Equipment

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A Viking’s Challenge 2022 is this weekend!

Want to participate?  It’s not too late!

Event Details

When: The weekend of March 4 – 6, 2022
Where: Anywhere in Canada. Shawn Bjornsson will be running in Gimli, MB, the largest icelandic community outside of Iceland.
How: To participate, you must first register here and pledge to run a certain number of kilometres. We will keep a running tally of the number of kilometres pledged and see how many times we can “cross” Lake Winnipeg.

Each participant will have the option to get a free medal to commemorate their participation. Running shirts and other merchandise are also available for purchase in our Etsy store!

 

A few words from the Founder of A Viking’s Challenge

“Hi everyone, Chris Isfeld here. The last few months have been pretty rough for me. As some of you know, in late 2021, a large mass was found on my right adrenal gland. After fighting melanoma for 3 years and finally getting the all clear in December 2020, this was not the news I’d hoped for. So back I went to treatment, first some radiation and now immunotherapy.

Luckily, I have access to these treatments in my own province, but not all melanoma patients are so fortunate. Many patients end up having to pay out of pocket to get to and from treatments, or worse, have to pay for treatments that aren’t covered. That’s why again this year, I’d like to invite you to participate in A Viking’s Challenge, the fundraiser I founded in 2020 to raise funds for melanoma patients.

Unfortunately, because of my treatment, I won’t be able to run the 30 km across Lake Winnipeg this year, but I’m inviting everyone to join the challenge and run or walk wherever you live. It would mean so much to me and I can assure you that you’d be helping make a big difference in someone’s life. To register or make a donation, visit bit.ly/AVC2022. Thank you!”

 

 

Click here to read more about it in the Abbotsford News

 

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Webinar: Diagnosed with Skin Cancer? Here’s What To Do Next

View the recording of our webinar ~ February 24, 2022

An Hour with Kathy Barnard

In this webinar, Kathy Barnard, founder of SYSF and melanoma survivor, shares her experience navigating and advocating through the Canadian health care system, which is complicated and can be confusing to many. She helps patients and caregivers understand how to get from diagnosis to surgical and/or systemic treatment of melanoma or non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC) such as metastatic basal cell carcinoma (BCC), squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) or merkel cell carcinoma (MCC).

Click HERE to view the recording!

And click HERE to download/print a list of Questions you can ask your Doctor

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Important Dates for 2022!

We have a very full and promising year ahead of us and we want you to be part of it! Here are some important dates to add to your calendar:

A Viking’s Challenge (Learn more below) – March 4-6, 2022
Giving Hope Gala – Virtual Pool Party Edition – April 28, 2022 @ 5-8pm PT / 8-11pm ET
Move for Melanoma – September 23-25, 2022
7th Annual Patients Redefining the Future of Health Care in Canada Summit – Week of November 14, 2022

                                                      

                                                       

 

A Viking’s Challenge – Click Here to Register!

In March of 2020, Chris Isfeld and his childhood friend Shawn Bjornsson completed a massive challenge. Three years after Chris was diagnosed with late stage melanoma and became partially paralyzed from the waist down, they ran 30km across frozen Lake Winnipeg and raised almost $20,000 for melanoma patients.

This year, life has thrown Chris yet another curve-ball. A large mass was found on his right adrenal gland, forcing him to stop training to focus on his treatment. Though Chris is hopeful that the immunotherapy treatment that saved his life in 2017 will help him overcome this latest challenge, he needs our support!

Let’s show Chris he is not alone on this journey by joining A Viking’s Challenge and pledging to run or walk! By channeling our inner Vikings, we will make a powerful statement of support for Chris and fellow melanoma patients across Canada.

 

And don’t forget to check your skin every month!

There’s no better time to prioritize your health by making a resolution to check your skin every month for skin cancer.

Monthly skin checks are the best way to detect skin cancer before it spreads. And the easiest way to stick to your resolution is to schedule it! Simply set a monthly notification on your phone to make sure you don’t forget.

Early detection is so important as it can make all the difference in the case of any melanoma OR non-melanoma skin cancer diagnosis.

Click here to learn how to easily perform a skin check at home!

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Get ready for A Viking’s Challenge 3rd Edition!

In March of 2020, Chris Isfeld and his childhood friend Shawn Bjornsson completed a massive challenge. Three years after Chris was diagnosed with late stage melanoma and recovered from being partially paralyzed from the waist down, they ran 30km across frozen Lake Winnipeg and raised almost $20,000 for melanoma patients. 

One year later, they were facing a different kind of Viking’s challenge: a global pandemic that kept Chris from returning to Gimli to run on the lake with Shawn. But that didn’t stop them from getting people all over Canada to join them in running and to raise funds and awareness wherever they were. 

This year, life has thrown Chris yet another curve-ball. A large mass was found on his right adrenal gland, forcing him to stop training to focus on his treatment. Though Chris is hopeful that the immunotherapy treatment that saved his life in 2017 will help him overcome this latest challenge, he needs our support!

Let’s show Chris he is not alone on this journey by joining A Viking’s Challenge 2022 and pledging to run or walk! By channeling our inner Vikings, we will make a powerful statement of support for Chris and fellow melanoma patients across Canada.

All registrants will receive a charitable donation tax receipt and those who want one will receive a beautiful AVC medal. To learn more about Chris’s story and the inaugural event, click here.

 

Event Details

When: March 3 – 6, 2022
Where: Again this year, because of the pandemic, the event will take place virtually, allowing participants to run any distance they choose from any location in Canada and beyond.
How: To participate, you must first register here and pledge to run a certain number of kilometres. We will keep a running tally of the number of kilometres pledged and see how many times we can “cross” Lake Winnipeg.

Each participant will have the option to get a free medal to commemorate their participation. Special t-shirts and other merchandise are also available for purchase in our Etsy store!

As always, every dollar raised through this event will go directly to assisting melanoma, non melanoma skin cancer and ocular melanoma patients meet their everyday needs during treatment in the form of transportation, accommodation, child care and more.

So what are you waiting for? Register now and start training to channel your inner Viking!

 

 

 

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