May 12, 2015 – Vancouver, BC – Mining for Miracles, the BC mining community’s longstanding fundraising campaign for BC Children’s Hospital, raised more than $1,066,184 on May 7 at its signature event, the Teck Celebrity Pie Throw. Participants raised funds by volunteering to take a pie in the face while asking friends, family and colleagues to pledge their support.

This year, representatives from Teck, Goldcorp, New Gold, Golder Associates, Amec Foster Wheeler, BLG, McMillan, Hatch, Finning, Ausenco, AME BC and MABC participated in Pie Throw. B.C. Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett also got into the act, challenging the audience at Pie Throw to raise $10,000 to “pie a politician”. The industry happily obliged, raising the $10,000 so that Minister Bennett could receive a pie in support of BC kids.

“The Teck Celebrity Pie Throw always attracts a lot of interest and a big crowd, and this great participation ultimately has a huge impact on the care children receive at BC Children’s Hospital,” said Teri Nicholas, president and CEO of BC Children’s Hospital Foundation.

“The B.C. mining sector has a proud tradition of giving back to communities and I’d like to congratulate all all the participants, volunteers and donors from across the industry for raising these funds in support of child health in B.C.,” said Bill Bennett, Minister of Energy and Mines.

“Supporting BC Children’s Hospital is part of the B.C. mining industry’s long history of working to strengthen communities across the province,” said Jason Weber, co-chair, Mining for Miracles.
“Eighteen representatives from across the industry participated in Pie Throw and soundly beat the $600,000 fundraising goal which is a testament to their commitment and the generosity of the entire mining industry,” said Jeff Hanman, co-chair, Mining for Miracles.

The Pie Throw also featured the 2015 Diamond Draw benefiting BC Children’s Hospital. The winner received a diamond package, valued at over $16,000, including a 1.20-carat cushion-cut diamond, gold and a designer setting donated by C3 Alliance Corp., Teck  and Costen Catbalue.

The Pie Throw and Diamond Draw were supported by hundreds of mining, exploration, development companies, service providers and suppliers across BC, Alberta, the Yukon and Northwest Territories, and their employees, family and friends.

Funds raised by Mining for Miracles in 2015 and 2016 will support the development of the CAUSES Clinic at BC Children’s Hospital. The new CAUSES Clinic will provide diagnostic DNA testing to support the accurate and efficient diagnosis of rare genetic diseases in children who would otherwise require numerous tests or who might not be diagnosed at all. The clinic will also provide families with genetic counselling, clinical interpretation of complex testing results, and personalized recommendations for treatment.

The CAUSES Clinic’s single test will reduce the number of invasive tests required, such as biopsies, biochemical tests, expensive single gene tests or MRI scans, which may even require sedation. There are 7,000 known genetic disorders and the CAUSES Clinic will use a single genomic test capable of identifying all of these at once. This may reduce the number of tests required to diagnose a patient’s condition from 10 or more to just one. This has the potential to reduce costs to families and the health-care system.

The partnership between BC Children’s Hospital Foundation and Mining for Miracles is a leading example of how industry, institutions and social-profit organizations can work together to provide world-class health care and services to the children and families of BC.

For more information please contact:

Jason Weber
Mining for Miracles Co-Chair

Jeff Hanman
Mining for Miracles Co-Chair

Stephen Forgacs
Director, Communications
BC Children’s Hospital Foundation

About Mining for Miracles

Every year volunteers from the mining community work together through Mining for Miracles to help improve the quality of health care for children in our province. Through its support of the construction of facilities and acquisition of specialized medical equipment at the hospital, Mining for Miracles is helping to keep BC Children’s Hospital at the forefront of pediatric care excellence.

About the CAUSES Clinic

The CAUSES Clinic will provide advanced DNA testing, clinical interpretation, genetic counselling, and personalized recommendations for treatment for children with complex, undiagnosed medical conditions. There are more than 7,000 known genetic disorders, and the CAUSES Clinic will test for all of these using one genomic test. If advanced DNA testing identifies a child with a treatable condition, then treatment can be started earlier. For some children, this will be life-changing. Obtaining the right treatment earlier will help prevent medical complications and save lives. The CAUSES Clinic is made possible by a $3-million commitment from Mining for Miracles through BC Children’s Hospital Foundation and is supported by the Provincial Health Services Authority and the University of British Columbia. Genome British Columbia has pledged to match Mining for Miracles’ commitment up to an additional $1 million and, in cooperation with the CAUSES Clinic, is seeking opportunities to leverage this partnership to secure additional funding. The CAUSES Clinic will ensure that BC Children’s Hospital remains a centre of excellence providing outstanding care to the children and families of British Columbia.

The CAUSES Clinic will:

Test at least 500 children and family members within the next three years to identify illnesses that would previously have gone undiagnosed;

Provide genetic counselling, interpretation of complex testing results, and personalized treatment recommendations for children who receive a diagnosis from the clinic’s advanced DNA testing;

Help reduce the number of invasive tests – such as biopsies, biochemical tests, expensive single gene tests, or MRI scans often requiring sedation – needed to obtain a diagnosis for children. This is expected to reduce the average number of tests per child required for a diagnosis from 10 or more to one, resulting in significant savings for both families and the health-care system;

Help prevent medical complications. In cases where advanced DNA testing identifies a treatable condition in a child, treatment can be started immediately. Obtaining the right treatment earlier will help prevent medical complications and save lives;

Partner with the BC Children’s Hospital BioBank to store biological samples donated by patients, which will contribute to significant research discoveries.