Mar 2010

Shinny, Stem Cells and Timbits – Oh, Canada

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It’s true. We were really cold. But this past weekend, over 20 people gathered to play a round of shinny at the “Shins of Steel” game in Ottawa. It was a mix of Foundation staff, volunteers, friends and family who participated in the first ever Stem Cell Shinny game, kicking off a month-long awareness and friendraising campaign in support of stem cell science.

The game was friendly, but the players were serious. I gave a quick welcome, we divided into teams, the ref (Jennifer Molson, a stem cell transplant recipient and Canadian Stem Cell Foundation volunteer extraordinaire) dropped the bright orange ball, and scrambled to get out of the way. The game was on.

The game lasted almost two hours, with the occasional break for timbits and hot chocolate. (A more Canadian way to spend a morning has not yet been invented.)

Thank you

These kinds of events are a lot fun. But they succeed because of the individuals who give their time, their ideas, and yes, the money to support them. I’m grateful to each of the people who played a role in this event. You made it fun, you surprised us with your humour, your donations, and your ideas, and you reminded us how important supporting stem cell science is to you.

If we can do it, so can you

Probably most striking about this event was how easy it was. The Foundation has put the tools in place to create your event—your own shinny game or something else altogether. We played in a school parking lot, I borrowed nets from a neighbour (and have kept them), got sticks from some friends (I don’t even play hockey), and made a quick run to Tim Horton’s for coffee and hot chocolate. It was that easy.

I’d encourage you to hold a game yourself. If you want to learn more about Shinny, host your own game or become a supporter, visit the Stem Cell Shinny homepage.

Trefor Munn-Venn is VP of Operations & Development at the Canadian Stem Cell Foundation. He’s also better at street hockey than you’d expect.

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