Joy Ambassadors Bring Their Own Sunshine

Jog4Joy – Part 2

I LOVE OUR VOLUNTEERS!

Awareness doesn’t happen without people coming together with a collective consciousness, talking about the cause, recognizing the need for change and honouring those who may struggle. It is through DIALOGUE and ACTION that we make a difference.

Today I am honouring our volunteers. Despite the downpour of rain, they showed up, got completely soaked and not only helped set up the event, run the event, but stayed afterwards to clean up!

This week I’ve been asking myself…why? It’s so easy to stay home when it’s ugly outside…why would these people do it? I am so humbled by them…I know why I was there but why were the volunteers showing up at 6:45 in the morning when it’s still dark and setting up in the pouring rain? They were wet within 20 minutes and stayed soaked to the skin until we packed up the truck 4 ½ hours later. Their hair sticking to their face. Cold hands. Wet feet.

And yet, they smiled.

They cheered!

They laughed!

They encouraged others as they finished the route.

They embodied the JOY in Jog4Joy…

I am so HUMBLED and INSPIRED by these incredible people and I cannot thank them enough. We all had our own reasons for being there and collectively we came together to show others that people really do care.

The rain also challenged us with equipment and electricity…and yet our amazing musicians still played.

I am a singer and these were beyond desirable conditions…and yet these incredible musicians sang their hearts out, shared their talent and honoured the cause. I had so many comments from participants who appreciated your music, thank you Ali Milner and your amazing band members.

Thank you Erik and Eva who performed beautiful jazz along the route. Your talent and positive energy greatly added to the inspiring and joyful experience for the participants.

You were ALL such an important and necessary part of creating a successful Jog4Joy inaugural year and giving HOPE, raising AWARENESS and showing SUPPORT. Each and everyone of you made a difference.  From my heart, I thank you.

Most of today’s photos are from my dear friend, the talented Angelo Renai.  On Thursday I will share photos of the participants…there are some wonderful shots so please come back and check it out!

With a smile of gratitude,

Tina

 

 

Jog4Joy – Thank you!

Jog4Joy – Sunday, October 14, 2012

Jog4Joy presented by WELLS FARGO celebrated our first inaugural year to raise awareness for mental and emotional wellness. There are many people to thank and acknowledge and lots of news to report so I will break this up into a three part series over the next week.

This year’s theme was BELIEVE.

From my perspective it looked like this:

BELIEVE IN YOUR DREAM.

BELIEVE IN YOURSELF.

FIND OTHERS WHO BELIEVE IN YOUR DREAM.

TOGETHER YOU TAKE THE DREAM AND TURN IT INTO A REALITY.

What was once a seed in my heart, flourished into a garden and that was due to many people being involved.

TITLE SPONSOR – WELLS FARGO

I am extremely grateful to Wells Fargo for understanding and sharing my vision and putting their trust in me. They sincerely care about the cause and truly embraced Jog4Joy recognizing the importance mental and emotional wellness has on our community – our children, family and friends. From my heart, thank you Wells Fargo.

Just like in sports, goals are not made by one person. It is a collaborative effort, each with the same vision working TOGETHER. My sincerest THANK YOU to the following sponsors for being part of the team effort to raise awareness for mental and emotional wellness:

GOLD SPONSORS:

BLAKES LAWYERS

CAI PRIVATE EQUITY

SANDMAN HOTEL GROUP

GRATITUDE SPONSORS:

ROCKY MOUNTAINEER

DOLCE DELIGHTS

LE PHYSIQUE

NATURE’S PATH

SORROL

OCEAN WELLNESS

SIEGEL’S BAGELS

STARBUCKS

NORTH AMERICAN PRODUCE

In addition, a special thank you to Canadian Western Trust and Lawson Lundell LLP for their contribution towards Jog4Joy.

There were also people who helped who wanted to remain anonymous. I honour your anonymity however I want to recognize your support…thank you…I know on a deep level how incredibly blessed I have been this year regarding our first event.

Radio, television and print are powerful. Word of mouth and social media are powerful in getting our event and cause to reach more than our immediate circle. Thank you Kurt Heinrich and Jennifer Harrison for being instrumental in spreading the awareness beyond my imagination! I am enormously grateful to you both.

ALL OF US, TOGETHER, WE WERE A VOICE FOR THOSE WHO MAY REMAIN SILENTLY SUFFERING.

Jog4Joy was honoured to partner with The Kelty Patrick Dennehy Foundation. I personally had a deep connection to their cause and once I met with Ginny, mother of Kelty and Riley, I knew I had to be involved. They are doing incredible work and if you missed being involved with Jog4Joy you can still support their foundation by going to their website and making a donation. You can see all the amazing things they have already done and their goals for the future. Your money goes to a cause that affects our kids, our families…our community.

Thank you doesn’t come close to expressing my gratitude to each and every one of you.

With a smile,

Tina

 

 

Jog4Joy Announcements!

This was taken on our route...absolutely beautiful!

WE HAVE LOTS OF EXCITING NEWS TO ANNOUNCE THIS WEEK FOR JOG4JOY PRESENTED BY WELLS FARGO AND IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE KELTY PATRICK DENNEHY FOUNDATION.

“Music expresses that which cannot be expressed and on which it is impossible to be silent” – Victor Hugo

Erik and Eva - 2 talented performers!

 

Jog4Joy loves the energy of music!

Last week I announced Erik and Eva.

These 2 beautiful performers will sing for you during your route. I know you will love them as much as I do! Make sure you wave and say HI as you pass by!

I am thrilled to announce that we have another wonderful artist performing at Jog4Joy.

 

 

Her name is Ali Milner. She has partnered with The Kelty Patrick Dennehy Foundation and written a song which she is going to perform for the first time live at Jog4Joy! Check out one of her latest songs:

Ali is such a talented performer:

  • She has performed at Vancouver’s JunoFest.
  • In summer 2010, she graced the stage at the legendary Lilith festival alongside icons like Sarah McLachlan, Sheryl Crow, Erykah Badu and Sugarland.
  • Her music has been broadcast on CBC Radio 2 and Radio 3.
  • She has traveled and shared her music in the UK, the USA and Asia. Along the way she’s shared bills with Michael Bublé, Ron Sexsmith, Divine Brown, Barenaked Ladies and countless others.

We are so EXCITED that she is now gracing our Jog4Joy stage!

Music is known to lift spirits, create connection to feelings and to help inspire…THANK YOU Ali, Eva and Erik for sharing your talent with us!

North Shore News - Photo by Mike Wakefield

I was very blessed to have an interview with the North Shore News about Jog4Joy! Check out the article here! Thank you North Shore News!! We appreciate your support!

We also announced on Facebook that Wells Fargo has generously released 2 CLUB SEAT TICKETS for an awesome Seahawks vs San Francisco 49ers game. The only way you can win these tickets is if you REGISTER and stay for the draw. Don’t miss out!

Click on this large green button to register!

Remember, if you can’t make it yourself, you can still support the cause by sponsoring a student from King David High School. Details are on the registration site.

WE WOULD LIKE TO THANK BLAKE LAW FIRM AND SANDMAN HOTEL GROUP FOR YOUR GENEROUS SPONSORSHIPS. WE GREATLY APPRECIATE YOUR SUPPORT TOWARDS THIS VERY IMPORTANT CAUSE!

Thanks for spreading the word and helping us create change in how people think about mental and emotional wellness. It’s an important topic and we are honoured that you are helping us help others.

With a smile,

Tina

PS. Please Note:  Same day registration is available however the price increases to $40 and t-shirts to $20.

 

Are You LISTENING?

I DID NOT WRITE THE FOLLOWING BLOG. IT IS AN ANONYMOUS LETTER I RECEIVED AND HAVE BEEN GRANTED PERMISSION TO SHARE. I HAVE HIGHLIGHTED CERTAIN PARTS BECAUSE I WANT THEM TO PENETRATE YOUR HEART AS MUCH AS IT DID MINE.

I am writing the following, as I am unable to make it down to Jog4Joy. I personally want to thank you for reading this letter. I poured my heart and soul into this, and I believe that people like you will change things, and raise awareness about mental health.

For the purpose of this letter I will go by Cas. I am twenty years young, currently working two jobs and attending university in Kamloops. I am surrounded by many great friends, family, as well as peers. However, I suffer from depression.

To put it in layman’s terms, depression sucks. If I could sprinkle some magic fairy dust to make it go away, I would. However, it’s just the fact of life. Some days I don’t feel like getting out of bed, and sometimes I even cancel plans with friends because I don’t wish to pretend to be happy when I’m truly not. Some days it would be difficult to even function, like I wanted to do nothing anymore. It got to the point where I even had a D.O.D, a “Date of Death” as I told a counselor one session. I even lost interest in drawing, which was one of my favourite things to do, and don’t even enjoy some of the little things in life. I have tried several different medications over the past two years, but alas none of them worked.

Because of the whole stigma still attached to mental health, it has been difficult for me to come out as being depressed. It’s because people don’t realize that you can’t just “suck it up”. Even though close family and friends know that I suffer, I don’t feel like other people, like other friends, school, or even work will understand that I do suffer from mental health problems and sometimes I will have really dark days. I won’t let people that know I suffer from depression, know that I have a bad day, even my parents. People know me as happy Cas and Cas that will try to cheer up others when they are feeling sad, not depressed Cas that sometimes feels like ending everything somedays.

When thinking of what to write in this letter, I came across a disturbing fact about suicidal rates in Canada. Suicide accounts for 24% of all deaths among 15-24 year olds and 16% among 16-44 year olds. I suffer from suicidal ideations, so this concerns me greatly. Mental health is something that needs to be discussed, so these numbers can come down.

What I hope you do on October 14th at Jog4Joy is raise awareness about mental health. Even though I’m depressed and slowly getting better, there are others like me that suffer because they feel like there is still a huge stigma attached to mental health. Mental health isn’t something that affects a certain age, race, culture, and social standing. No, mental health can affect anyone in their lifetime. Some people suffer for a short period of time, others for longer. We need to take a stand and let it be known that we are not doing this alone, and that there are people out there that are standing with us to help us through our difficult times.

I read this quote by a man named Stephen Fry, who is a British actor who suffers from bipolar disorder. Even though he talks about depression in the following quote, I believe it can be applied to any mental health: bipolar, anxiety, schizophrenia… You name it.

“If you know someone who’s depressed, please resolve never to ask them why. Depression isn’t a straightforward response to a bad situation; depression just is, like the weather. Try to understand the blackness, lethargy, hopelessness, and loneliness they’re going through. Be there for them when they come through the other side. It’s hard to be a friend to someone who’s depressed, but it is one of the kindest, noblest, and best things you will ever do.”

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading this, it means a lot to me for an individual like you to make a difference, and help bring awareness to mental health.

This is real. This is life for those suffering with depression and mental health issues. Please be a VOICE for “Cas” and other’s like “Cas”. TOGETHER we can help those who have set a “Date Of Death”

I don’t know about you but that rocks me to my core and I want to do whatever I can to give HOPE to those who feel this is the only option.

PLEASE DON’T LOOK AWAY, REGISTER TODAY.

From my heart, to yours…thank you.

With love and compassion,

Tina

Youth Supporting Youth

Today I spoke to an amazing group of kids at the King David High School in Vancouver, BC.  I asked them what they felt mental and emotional wellness meant. Some said, “SELF ESTEEM”, “CONFIDENCE” and “SUPPORT FROM OTHERS”.  Great answers.

I’m so impressed with these kids because they understand the importance of raising awareness for mental and emotional wellness. They are LEADERS standing up for other youth to let them know they aren’t alone.  I LOVE YOUTH SUPPORTING YOUTH.  So often we hear the negative stories and today I wanted to highlight positive ones. When asked how they felt about Jog4Joy one student raised her hand and said, “I’m excited!” Me too!!

Thank you King David High School for being a part of Jog4Joy presented by Wells Fargo and in partnership with The Kelty Patrick Dennehy Foundation.  We are so happy you are going to join us on October 14th!

The other exciting news is that we have some WONDERFUL artists joining us at our event.  As a singer, I LOVE music so I am thrilled to announce Erik and Eva will perform along the route as you jog/walk/run.  I am so grateful I came across these incredibly FUN and TALENTED young performers.

They’ve been performing together for eight years and are currently completing degrees at the University of British Columbia. They are adorable together!  I fell in love with their energy, voices and talent.

They are also leaders: YOUTH SUPPORTING YOUTH.

This month in MacLean’s magazine, the cover story is about university students and the rising issue of depression, hopelessness and feeling suicidal.  The statistics are shocking. According to a study of 1600 students at University of Alberta in 2011:

  • 51% Felt things were HOPELESS
  • 87% Felt OVERWHELMED
  • 87% Felt EXHAUSTED
  • 61% Felt LONELY
  • 65% Felt VERY SAD.
  • 34% Felt so DEPRESSED IT WAS DIFFICULT TO FUNCTION.

By having YOUTH involved in Jog4Joy, they send the message:

You aren’t alone.

We understand.

We are here to support you.

Please register. Let’s help those university and high school students know that they aren’t alone. Let’s show them WE CARE and we are here to help.

Register by clicking on this big, obvious green button!

If you can’t make it yourself, you can still SPONSOR someone who may not be able to afford to go but who could really benefit from being around positive supportive energy. (Click obvious green button)

We love groups, so sign up a group of people…more is definitely merrier!

(Click obvious green button!!)

Thank you for spreading the word and helping us give support to those who need it. Thank you for helping us create change in how people think about mental and emotional wellness. It’s an important topic and we are honoured that you are helping us help others.

A BIG THANK YOU TO NATURE’S PATH AND LE PHYSIQUE FOR THEIR GENEROUS SPONSORSHIP TOWARDS JOG4JOY!

Have a beautiful weekend. Get outside and enjoy the lovely September weather.

With a smile,

Tina

PS. Don’t forget to come back on Tuesday as I have another incredible singer who has travelled the world and shared the stage with Sarah McLaughlin!