Courage to Come Back nominations now open

Awards celebrate everyday heroes in B.C. who've overcome adversity

Homeless and addicted to drugs, facing cancer (twice) while living in an internment camp, burns to 75 per cent of his body — these are just some of the seemingly insurmountable obstacles several winners of the 2017 Courage to Come Back Awards faced and conquered.

Then there’s the talented young musician who was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy at age three, a homeless mother living with mental health issues who successfully fought to regain custody of her children, and a former, homeless addict living with HIV and a brain injury who gives back to his community.

article continues below

Their odds of not only surviving, but also thriving may have been low. Yet, but despite everything they’d been through, John Westhaver, Stephen Scott, Esther Mastubuchi, Rachel Fehr, Deborah Carter and Richard Quan stood proudly on the stage at the Vancouver Convention Centre last May to accept their Courage to Come Back Awards in six categories: addiction, mental health, medical, physical rehabilitation, social adversity and youth.

Does someone you know deserve this honour?

Each year, Coast Mental Health invites British Columbians to celebrate everyday heroes in their communities by nominating them for the Courage to Come Back Awards, chaired by philanthropist Lorne Segal. Nominations are now open for the 20th anniversary of the awards, presented by Wheaton Precious Metals. This is an opportunity to recognize community members who have not only overcome tremendous illness or adversity, but also those whose own challenges have inspired them to selflessly give back to others.

The awards were co-founded by Shirley Broadfoot with a dual purpose. One was to shine a light on men, women and youth who had overcome adversity and sometimes horrendous circumstances with their souls intact and with a desire to help others. The other goal was to raise money for Coast Mental Health, of which she was chairperson of its foundation.

Courage to Come Back Award recipients and their moving stories are celebrated at a fundraising event annually in May in support of Coast Mental Health. In its first year, the awards drew 600 guests and raised $80,000. In 2017, the event was attended by 1,500 guests and raised $1.64 million for a 19-year total of more than $13 million.

To nominate someone worthy of an award in your community, visit couragetocomeback.ca.

sthomas@vancourier.com

@sthomas10

Read Related Topics

Comments

NOTE: To post a comment you must have an account with at least one of the following services: Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ You may then login using your account credentials for that service. If you do not already have an account you may register a new profile with Disqus by first clicking the "Post as" button and then the link: "Don't have one? Register a new profile".

The Vancouver Courier welcomes your opinions and comments. We do not allow personal attacks, offensive language or unsubstantiated allegations. We reserve the right to edit comments for length, style, legality and taste and reproduce them in print, electronic or otherwise. For further information, please contact the editor or publisher, or see our Terms and Conditions.

comments powered by Disqus

Popular Vancouver Courier

Sign Up For Our e-Newsletter!

Popular Community