Metro Vancouver soccer players, fans, friends and family will gather in Coquitlam next weekend for the first time in two years for an annual fundraising event.
After going virtual in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Kick for a Cure is set to take the fields at Town Centre Park next Saturday (July 9) in hopes of raising thousands for BC Children's Hospital (BCCH).
The Michael Cuccione Foundation is hovering around the $1 million mark ahead of its 15th year hosting the popular day-long summer spectacle, which includes a co-ed adult tournament, youth tournament and soccer clinics for kids.
As of this publication (July 2), more than 30 teams and nearly 250 people are signed up to play in anticipation of a warm welcome — by both the foundation and the weather.
Kick for a Cure started to benefit CAR-T cell therapy and personalized treatments for patients with leukaemia and lymphoma.
"There’s no chemotherapy, no radiation. They use their own immune cells to build an antibody against the cancer," says foundation spokesperson Gloria Cuccione.
She and her husband Domenic began the non-profit in honour of their late son, Michael, who died in 2001 after a respiratory failure following complications from a vehicle accident.
Michael had also beat cancer twice in his 16 years of life. He was en route to becoming a successful actor-musician and had lived in the United States for some time to pursue his dream.
Proceeds from the family-friendly soccer tournament will be earmarked for the foundation's childhood cancer research program at BCCH.
Interested attendees that won't be kicking a ball around can expect lots of amenities, including:
- Live DJ
- Food vendors and a beer garden
- Carnival games and prizes
- Face painting
Kick for a Cure is scheduled for July 9 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Town Centre Park (1299 Pinetree Way).