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Waves of Hope Dragon Boat Team contributes to regional community cancer programs

Members of the Waves of Hope Dragon Boat Team recently presented the Cancer Chemotherapy Unit at Dauphin Regional Health Centre (DRHC) with a cheque for $1000.

Similar donations were occurring at the Brandon, Hamiota and Russell Chemotherapy Units. The contributions help cancer patients on their treatment journey and promote the continued need for early detection of breast cancer.

The Team was formed in 1999 by a group of breast cancer survivors from the Brandon area. Today, the Team has grown to include breast cancer survivors and supporters from 12 communities located in the Parkland and Westman regions. The Team gathers at Minnedosa Lake on Wednesday nights for practice once the paddling season starts.

The marriage between breast cancer survivors and dragon boating began in Vancouver in 1966. Dr. Don McKenzie completed a medical study which found that breast cancer survivors benefitted both physically and psychologically by paddling a dragon boat with others. The history of dragon boating is fascinating and reaches all parts of the world.

“Our boat, Kindred Spirit, holds 22 which includes one drummer who keeps the team in time and motivates us to paddle our best. There are 20 paddlers, and one ‘steers person’ whose job is to keep us going in the right direction and control our launching and return to the dock,” said Gloria Paziuk.

“It is amazing how fast our boat goes. There is no better way to enjoy a lovely summer evening than skimming across the water in a dragon boat,” she added.

You can learn more about the Waves of Hope Team, and the many resources available about breast cancer, by visiting

The Dauphin Regional Health Centre Community Cancer Program benefits from a generous donation of $1000 from members of the Waves of Hope Dragon Boat Team. From front left are Chris Yakielashek and Shelley Tokarchuk (DRHC Chemo Unit), Gloria Paziuk and Lynda Giannotti. Back row from left are Pam Harrigan, and from the DRHC, Terri Strong, Shelly Nichols and Dr Jason Reed.