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July 1st - Beginning of a new journey on a proud Canada Day!

2 July 2009 3 Comments

img_0191.jpg  As one of the volunteers has already said, “10 years ago, a run across Canada was a dream. 5 years ago, it became a reality, and today, on July 1st, 2009 Canada Day, it has become a reality!”

Years of planning and preparation, along with the hard work that’s continuing as we speak, has finally given it’s first fruit, as the East Team successfully completed the first day of the Children’s Run Across Canada!

We embarked on this special day with a beautiful morning at the Newfoundland Sikh Society, which truly became a second home for us during our stay here. At 6:30am, upon arrival at the gurdwara, Pritam Singh Cheema led the “panj poriyan da paath” which was followed by a heartwarming and inspiring ardaas by Amanjit Singh Dhillon, that brought tears to the eyes of some of the participants. Pritam Singh Cheema, then proceeded to take the vaak, and Puran Singh Cheema followed with an English and Punjabi translation of the vaak.

With Waheguru’s blessings intact, the East Team proceeded to the exact spot where Terry Fox started his Run across Canada at St. John’s harbourfront area. To commerorate such an enormous undertaking we first payed respect to this site by having Jeevanjot Kaur Dhillon and Amandeep Singh Chahal lay flowers on the Terry Fox memorial, and Inderpal Kaur Wig led the group for singing of “O Canada” where everyone, including participants, volunteers and spectators joined in. After many jakaras, the East Team took their very first running steps to start the run! We all ran together as a team for the first kilometer, and from there Amritpaul Singh Dhillon took over the steepy hills of St. John’s as our first individual runner to kick start the Run-Across-Canada. A job very well done by Amritpaul who braved the very steep uphills of St. John’s! The Blue Team then proceeded to take turns from that point until we reached the Confederation Building where Bikramjit Singh Gill made a presentation about the event and our cause, and the East Team presented their first donation cheque to Janeway Children’s Hospital Foundation. Bhavana Lamba and Parmjot Singh Sabharwal presented the cheque to the Director of the Janeway Children’s Hospital Foundation, Lynn Sparkes, and the Mayor of St. John’s, Dennis O’Keefe, congratulated and wished us luck on our endeavours. The Mayor, Director of Janeway’s Children’s Hospital Foundation and the President of St. John’s Sikh Society, Renu Kaur Gill, were all gifted with the Children’s Run Across Canada t-shirts as a momentum for the event and thank you for their support. Renu Kaur Gill also presented us with a generous $1000 cheque on behalf of the St. John’s, Newfoundland Sikh Society, and we were all extremely excited to see a brief summary of this covered on the CBC’s Here and Now news program in the evening news! The day concluded with the friendly, familiar, and welcoming community of the Sikh Society, as they bid us farewell with yet another wonderful meal and service, along with love and support that we will remember forever! We are in debt to this community for providing us with a home away from home through their love, as we started our first day of the run!

We’re happy to share that we completed our goal of running 90 kms today, along with we also received:
135 car-honks (thanks to Tanjot & Bikram Gill), 2 dog-barks, and a $2 donation from a gas station! But most importantly, we received the positive encouragement, strength and enforcement that we were looking for to make sure we are on the right path - emotionally, physically, and mentally!

We are excited and looking forward to our second and last day in Newfoundland tomorrow before we head back on the ferry to Nova Scotia! Subscribe to our RSS Feed and stay posted on where the run is and what’s going on!

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  • Gurjit Flora said:

    Oh man. I’m sitting here in Toronto reading these updates and it so exciting to hear about the east teams journey. After hearing about all the troubles of getting to NFL, I’m happy everything is going smoothly now. Keep up the great work East Team, can’t wait to see you all in 3 weeks!!!

  • iwig (author) said:

    It’s been an amazing journey and we’re so proud of all the kids! They’re definitely working hard and dealing wonderfully with everything! We’re looking forward to going to Halifax gurdwara tomorrow for some more yummy langar, and love and support that makes us feel so at home, just like in NFL! :)

  • Tejwant said:

    Hi guys
    Keep it up.Yesterday I saw east team picture in Punjabi Post dated July 2nd,though it was a one day old newspaper founded in Gurdwara office but it which was very excited news. Punjabi Post again given a ad today july 4.Thanks Mr. Grewal. I also heared from Balvir Singh, Vice president of Scarborough gurdwara that Harjot was on Radio live. Harjot’s reference was also in Punjabi Post ad.Thank Harjot.

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