Mining for Miracles Launches 2021 Campaign to Establish Cellular and Regenerative Medicine Centre (CRMC) at BC Children’s Hospital
January 28, 2021
PRINCE GEORGE, BC – Mining for Miracles, the BC mining industry’s long-standing fundraising campaign for BC Children’s Hospital Foundation, launched its 2021 campaign today in support of BC Children’s Hospital’s Cellular and Regenerative Medicine Centre (CRMC), the first of its kind in Western Canada. Premier John Horgan joined BC mining industry representatives at the Virtual BC Natural Resources Forum today to launch this year’s fundraising campaign.
“Mining for Miracles continues to demonstrate how the women and men working in the BC mining industry contribute to the strength and resilience of families and communities across our province,” said Premier Horgan. “Over the years their campaigns have raised over $33 million to support innovative health care initiatives at BC Children’s Hospital. This is just one of the many ways the resource industry makes our province stronger.”
In 2021, Mining for Miracles will add to funds raised in 2020 toward their commitment to establish the CRMC, a $3.385 million initiative. The CRMC will give clinicians at BC Children’s the tools to better understand the genetic cause of heart arrhythmias so they can provide the best possible care to children in BC. It will result in improved diagnoses, identification of optimal treatments, and potentially, cures—improving and saving the lives of children across the province and beyond. In the future, the CRMC may also be used to provide answers for the thousands of children living with other life-altering conditions, like diabetes, cancer, bowel disease, and epilepsy.
“Once established, the Cellular and Regenerative Medicine Centre will become an important resource for researchers across BC Children’s,” said Dr. Wyeth Wasserman, Executive Director, BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute. “We are looking forward to the tremendous advances that will result when we combine the expertise of BC Children’s researchers with this leading-edge technology and facilities.”
“Every year thousands of women and men across the mining industry come together to raise funds to support important child health initiatives in BC,” said Karla Mills, Co-Chair of Mining for Miracles and Vice President, Project Development at Teck.
“Through the incredible support of the mining community year after year, we are helping ensure kids across our province have access to world class health care,” added Steve Krause, Co-Chair of Mining for Miracles and President of Avisar Chartered Professional Accountants.
Why is establishing the CRMC so important?
- Every year, about 50,000 Canadians, including children, will die suddenly because of a cardiac arrest.
- Ten per cent of children with heart rhythm disorders are at high risk for sudden cardiac arrest – a condition where the heart suddenly and unexpectedly stops beating, and, if not treated within minutes is fatal.
- There are 1,000 families followed by the BC inherited heart rhythm disorder program, a group of specialists in cardiology, as well as medical genetics that identify, screen and manage individuals in the province affected by inherited heart rhythm conditions that put them at risk of sudden cardiac arrest.
- Health care is increasingly using genetics to identify why diseases occur. The CRMC will give clinicians at BC Children’s the tools to better understand the genetic cause of heart arrhythmias so they can provide the best possible care to children in BC.
- Currently, to find the appropriate treatment options to prevent cardiac arrest, doctors must determine through trial and error which heart arrhythmia medication combination is the right one for each individual child.
- With only ten drops of blood, researchers at the CRMC will be able to create a “disease in a dish” where they can generate and study a specific child’s beating heart cells.
- By studying cells in a lab, researchers can determine if children are at high risk of sudden cardiac arrest and help determine the best treatment options.
How BC Children’s CRMC will transform pediatric cardiac care
- The CRMC will be the first of its kind in Western Canada
- The CRMC has the potential to prevent years of uncertainty and reduce potential risks and side effects of ineffective drug options. BC’s kids need the CRMC so that they can receive a more accurate diagnosis and tailored treatment options.
- The future vision for the CRMC is to expand beyond childhood heart arrhythmias and apply this state of the art technology to ultimately improve care for children living with other conditions, such as diabetes, cancer, bowel disease, and epilepsy.
- BC Children’s has the clinical and scientific expertise to be leaders in pediatric cellular and regenerative medicine, but they require infrastructure and equipment to do this.
About Mining for Miracles
Every year, volunteers from the mining community work together through Mining for Miracles to help improve the quality of health care for children in our province. Through its support of the construction of facilities, ground-breaking research and the acquisition of specialized medical equipment at the hospital, Mining for Miracles is helping to keep BC Children’s Hospital at the forefront of excellence in pediatric care. The success of Mining for Miracles in funding initiatives like the CRMC depends on the generosity of individuals and corporations throughout British Columbia. Donations can be made through employee and corporate fundraising initiatives, or through fundraising events such as the annual Mining for Miracles Pie Throw, taking place virtually in late May 2021. Visit www.miningformiracles.ca for more information and to donate.
About BC Children’s Hospital Foundation
BC Children’s Hospital is the only hospital in the province devoted exclusively to the care of children, and is one of the few pediatric medical centres in North America with a world-class acute care centre, research institute, mental health facility and rehabilitation centre all on a single campus. Leading experts at BC Children’s provide a specialized level of expertise, innovative therapies and kid-focused care that can’t be found anywhere else in the province, including for the sickest and most seriously injured. At BC Children’s Hospital Foundation, we have a vision that every child is healthy and able to fulfill their hopes and dreams. The generosity of donors fuels our ability to help conquer childhood illnesses and address the biggest health challenges that face kids today. Please follow us at @bcchf or visit bcchf.ca for more information.
Premier John Horgan (bottom right) meets Kiara Herrera (bottom left), BC Children’s Hospital patient, along with her mother Claudia Herrera, father Omar Herrera, Karla Mills (top left), Mining for Miracles Co-Chair and Vice President, Project Development, Teck Resources, Steven Krause (top right), Mining for Miracles Co-Chair and President of Avisar Chartered Professional Accountants, and Meghan McQuaid (top centre), Philanthropy Officer, BC Children’s Hospital Foundation today to kick off the 2021 Mining for Miracles campaign.
For more information please contact:
Mining for Miracles Co-Chair
Mining for Miracles Co-Chair
BC Children’s Hospital Foundation