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On stage with Kelly and Two for the Show

On stage with Kelly and Two for the Show

On stage with Kelly and Two for the Show

On stage with Kelly and Two for the Show

Donor Story

Dance for Hope

Kelly Westlake and her family have experienced the effects of cancer many times since starting the Dance for Hope annual event 10 years ago.

The father of her children and former spouse, Shawn, was diagnosed with stage III colon cancer in 2016, and her father, Glenn, with lung cancer in 2022. Both survived, and are currently living cancer free. However, she lost her father-in-law, Allan, and brother-in-law, Scott, to this horrible disease in between.

“Unfortunately, cancer has touched way too many people that I love,” said Kelly. These experiences are what keeps Dance for Hope going. In its infancy, it started as “Dance for the Walk”; a fundraising dance to support participating in the 60 km Walk to End Women’s Cancer, which she and Shawn participated in until 2016. Through the pandemic, the event was temporarily renamed “Baskets for Hope”, which included prizes meant for the cancelled dance.

Since 2016, this event has supported the R.S. McLaughlin Durham Regional Cancer Centre where Shawn received his life-saving treatment – raising over $21,000 for Lakeridge Health – and Hearth Place Cancer Support Centre, whose services helped Kelly’s children, Brooklyn and Dawson, through that difficult time.  In total, the monies raised for all the charities is $61,600.

From the organization of the event to participation and even special donations, it truly is a group effort to continue Dance for Hope each year.

One of Kelly’s fondest memories is when her daughter, Brooklyn, decided to donate her hair to Angel Hair For Kids. “It’s a fundraiser that takes children’s hair and makes wigs for children who lose their hair during cancer treatment,” explained Kelly.

“She had her very long hair cut off on stage at the dance and the crowd was incredible.”

“Seeing how interested both Brooklyn and Dawson, my son, have been over the years and the help they’ve provided behind the scenes is always very special to me,” Kelly said proudly.

This year, Dance for Hope returns after the pandemic and boasts one of their largest corporate sponsor line-ups since its inception.

“We always have a huge raffle prize table, so the generosity of all of the incredible businesses and people who donate simply amaze me every year,” said Kelly.

This year’s Dance for Hope takes place on Saturday, May 11 at the Solina Community Centre in Clarington. You can visit their Facebook Event Page for more information and to RSVP.