The Abreast in the Rockies dragonboat crew at a festival this summer past.

The Abreast in the Rockies dragonboat crew at a festival this summer past.

Funding comes in for dragon boaters

The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation is handing out $58,000 to 24 dragon boat teams, including Abreast in the Rockies.

The BC/Yukon region for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation is handing out $58,000 to 24 dragon boat teams, a chunk of which will go locally to Abreast in the Rockies.

The local dragon boat group will get roughly $2,000 of that funding, which will go towards breast cancer awareness, dragon boat festival costs and hospital equipment purchases.

“They’re very interested in us promoting awareness through the things that we do like dragon boat festivals and races and things like that and other things we do in the community,” said Sandy Zeznik, a spokesperson for Abreast in the Rockies.

“So if we ever do anything in the community—fundraisers, a barbecue or a golf tournament, the women’s show at St. Eugene this year—we always bring the foundation information with us.”

While known for their prowess out on the water with the dragon boat racing at festivals across the province, Abreast in the Rockies also supports local projects at the East Kootenay Regional Hospital.

“We also do fundraising for breast cancer projects, we put money into the digital mammogram at the hospital,” Zeznik said. “We put money into the oncology department, we put money into sentinel nodes probe, which assess whether breast cancer has moved to the lymph nodes.”

Abreast in the Rockies is active with the dragon-boat racing from February to September each year, and while the group is on the way to wrapping up the season, Zeznik said they’re always looking for new paddlers.

“We also are always looking for breast cancer survivors who wish to paddle,” she said. “It’s a very physical thing, it has to do with camaraderie, it has to do with being physically fit, it has to do with just feeling great.

“So we’re always looking for new paddlers.”

For more information, or to get involved with Abreast in the Rockies, contact Zeznik at: szeznik@shaw.ca