While SMA is a rare disease that many people are unaware of, an active network of advocacy groups work worldwide to raise funds and awareness about the disease. As part of this effort, the Angel Gala in Canada will continue its legacy of supporting spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) research and patients this upcoming weekend with the 9th Angel Gala for Spinal Muscular Atrophy. The event will feature cocktails, a sumptuous dinner, a live auction, and dancing for a worthwhile cause. For the past 8 years, this SMA benefit has successfully helped raise over $550,000. The gala is set to take place on Saturday, November 15, 2014, at the Glencairn Golf Club in Halton Hills, Ontario, Canada. All proceeds will go to non-profit Families of SMA Canada.
Spinal muscular atrophy is a genetic, currently incurable disease that causes progressive paralysis and muscle wasting. This disease varies with age of onset and rate of progression, but the earlier the disease manifests itself, which can be as soon as infancy as seen in SMA Type 1, the lower the level of functioning. Today’s research on potential treatments include attempting to preserve motor neurons and increasing levels of functional SMN protein, but much remains to be discovered and understood about this paralytic and fatal disease.
This year’s benefit is spearheaded by Cheryl Vallender, a mother of a boy who had died of SMA in his 6th week of life, 8 years ago. She shares, “We think of Max every day and wish we could have him here with us. That’s why we do this; for him and for the families whose children are fighting SMA right now.”
The gala will be hosted by CTV’s Amber MacArthur of App Central, and will honor 4-year-old Arran Adward Deegan, who was diagnosed with SMA when he was only 18 months old and has since then received generous, crucial support from Families of SMA Canada.
The gala’s itinerary is as follows:
5:30 pm: Cocktail Reception/Silent Auction Opens
6:30 pm: Dinner
8:00 pm: Video Presentation, Guest Speakers and Acknowledgements
8:30 pm: Live Auction
8:45 pm: Door Prize and Heads and Tails Raffle
9:00 pm: Dance
9:45 pm: Auction Tables Close
10:00-11:00 pm: Silent and Live Auction Cash Out
10:45 pm: Coffee Bar Opens
1:00 am: Bar Closes
Tickets cost $125 and can be bought at www.angelgala.com. Those interested to donate an item to the Silent/Live Auction or if you would like to make a tax-deductible Cash Donation,
you may contact Cheryl Vallender by dialling (905) 847-1683 or e-mailing [email protected].