By Denise M. Roberts

More than 2,000 children with cancer (and their families) enjoy activities offered year-round by the Trillium Childhood Cancer Support Center. The organization provides an environment that normalizes relationships and experiences with the goal of ensuring that children living with cancer have a special place to retreat from the disease, if only briefly. The center also operates Camp Trillium, the first of its kind in Canada.

A member of the Children’s Oncology Camping Association International, Trillium Center operates two residential camps capable of accommodating more than 1,500 campers each year. Garratt’s Island has been home to the primary camp since 1989; Rainbow Lake (in Waterford) is a 140-acre children’s paradise, providing water sports in the heart of a wooded wilderness.

Trillium does not receive financial support from either the federal or provincial government. Service clubs, organizations and private individuals contribute to and enhance the programs.

One major supporter is McKeough Supply Inc. of Hamilton, Ontario, a member of the Canadian Institute of Plumbing and Heating (CIPH). McKeough recently held its Eighth Annual Bill Porteous Memorial Golf Tournament at Burford Golf Links. A large plaque with the name of each tournament winner hangs in the main lobby at McKeough, a continuing source of pride for the company. (Bill Porteous was the company’s General Manager, who himself succumbed to cancer.)

The annual event draws sponsors and participants from a variety of firms involved in the water industry. From plumbing to filtration, dealers to manufacturers, the attendees focus on helping others. The importance of the annual golf tournament is measured by the smiles of children whose illness means pain and isolation.

With 127 participants, the day was deemed a success even though the full slate of activities was overshadowed by inclement weather. Tournament play was interrupted (but quickly resumed) after a brief rain, yet the teams remained hopeful until a larger storm ensued. The event was called when it was apparent there was little chance of a break in the weather. Not every team had the opportunity to complete the same number of holes, making it difficult to determine a winner. The participants agreed that Camp Trillium should be honored with the title. In addition, all proceeds (CN $10,0000, US $8,800) raised from the tournament were donated to Camp Trillium and the Canadian Cancer Society.

McKeough Supply would like to thank the many generous participants and sponsors for their contributions to the success of the efforts on behalf of the campers and their families.

About the company and how to help
McKeough Supply Inc. has been serving southwest Ontario for 160 years. The business started as a hardware store and branched out in a number of directions, becoming a manufacturer and supplier of gasoline engines, boilers, saw mills, boats, motors, drilling rigs, drainage pumps, machine work, steel pipe and steel warehousing. With the acquisition of Mechanical Plumbing & Heating in 2005, McKeough Supply added branches in Hanover and Collingwood. McKeough remains a key distribution partner for the HVAC, industrial pipe valve and fittings, plumbing and refrigeration industries in Ontario. Those interested in helping the camp offer quality programs to young cancer victims, please call Trillium at (888) 999-CAMP or visit the website



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