Equestrian fundraiser: Breast cancer survivors “jump for hope”


St. Lazare — Five breast cancer survivors will participate in a unique equestrian event, “Jump for Hope,” on Saturday, May 26, at Écuries Pépinière in St. Lazare. This second annual Jump for Hope is a fundraising event organized by the Royal Victoria Hospital Foundation for the Cedars Breast Clinic at the McGill University Health Centre.

Until a few months ago, these competitors had never ridden a horse. It was another challenge for women who have already faced a cancer diagnosis.

“Learning to ride and jump symbolizes the fears that breast cancer survivors must learn to overcome,” said Louise Desjardins, a founding member of Jump for Hope and a competitor in last year’s event.

Among the riders are twin sisters Carmel and Anne-Marie Kyte, both diagnosed with cancer in the fall of 2005. “Learning to ride has been hard work, but I have a great sense of accomplishment and it is a way of giving back for the care I have received,” said Carmel.

“This is a very innovative event and I congratulate and thank the competitors and the organizers,” said Dr. Sarkis Meterissian, Director of the Cedars Breast Clinic. “Our aim at the MUHC Cedars Breast Clinic is to provide our patients with comprehensive one-stop care. Jump for Hope provides us with important support for our work.”

The breast cancer riding class is held in conjunction with the regular classes of the annual St. Lazare Horse Show, a national event that draws Olympic-calibre riders. A “Black Tie and Blue Jeans” gala dinner and auction will be held on site immediately following the show. Tickets are $250 per person. Proceeds from the event will be used to develop a “navigation kit” for patients newly diagnosed with breast cancer, to help them deal with the various stages of their treatment.

Jump for Hope will be hosted by Canadian TV personalities Sonia Benezra, host of Carte Blanche on 98.5 Radio FM, and Sue Smith, host of CBC’s Living Montreal.

For ticket information contact Ms. Suzanne Beaudin:

Note to Media: Media are invited to meet the riders at their training session at 1:30 pm, Eastwood Stables, St. Lazare, Quebec
Wednesday, May 16, 2007 (directions below)

About the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC)
The McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) is a comprehensive academic health institution with an international reputation for excellence in clinical programs, research and teaching. The MUHC is a merger of five teaching hospitals affiliated with the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University — the Montreal Children’s, Montreal General, Royal Victoria, and Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital, as well as the Montreal Chest Institute. Building on the tradition of medical leadership of the founding hospitals, the goal of the MUHC is to provide patient care based on the most advanced knowledge in the health care field, and to contribute to the development of new knowledge.

Directions to Eastwood Equine
4170 Ste. Angelique, St. Lazare, QC

From Highway 20, take exit 17 north on route 201, turn right (east) onto Ste. Angelique.
4170 Ste. Angelique is on the right side of the street.

From Highway 40, take exit 22, turn left (south) on St. Charles until the road ends at Ste. Angelique, turn right on Ch. Ste. Angelique.
4170 Ste. Angelique is on the left side of the street.

(Look for the pink balloons)

Members of the media may contact:

Contact Information

Seeta Ramdass
MUHC Public Relations & Communications Services
Office Phone: