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Vernon run moves past first-year total with $45,000 raised

Move4Mom Relay, organized. by Vernon couple, raises funds for VJH Foundation and cancer centre
Oliver Stankiewicz (left) accepts $10,000 from Bannister GM general manager Brad Nakucyj as the Vernon auto dealer fulfills its financial pledge to Stankiewicz’s Movement Run Project (Contributed)

“Inspiring gratitude. Improving lives. Giving back.”

Just some of the phrases Vernon’s Oliver Stankiewicz uses when describing his mission to support families and individuals facing a cancer diagnosis, treatment or remission in the community.

The 2022 Movement Project, where supporters could run, walk or hike any distance from anywhere, was held during the month of May and culmin­­ated in the Move4Mom Relay held on Mother’s Day in Kalamlaka Lake Provincial Park. The project, which saw Stankiewicz run 100 kilometres in 24 hours, raised an amazing $45,232 for the McMurtry-Baerg Cancer Centre at Vernon Jubilee Hospital this year.

“One small movement, a small shift in perspective, can change someone’s story, can change someone’s life. As a community, with some movement, we have the power to make a big difference,” said Stankiewicz. “Myself and my partner Marie (Atticus) started The Movement Project with the idea of taking small steps forward, one foot in front of the other. This small ripple has spread and as a community, as a team w­­e have created something great, a movement.”

Helping The Movement Project in 2022 was a pledge from Vernon’s Bannister Vernon. The auto dealer agreed to match donations to the project up to $10,000.

“Their contribution really pushed people to come out and run, walk or hike that day and it was a rewarding experience for people to see that not only their sign-up fee for the event, which goes straight towards the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation, but also their participation, per kilometre, made a big difference in the fundraising total,” said Stankiewicz.

“We hope to see more businesses next year make pledges to match a dollar value per kilometre, and we challenge other local businesses to step up and set a goal. It’s a great way to show people that small steps, as a community, can make a big difference and especially in this current environment, people want to get out and participate in live events that benefit the community.”

Stankiewicz started the project following the death of his mother from cancer at age 59.

“What started as a tribute to his mom, Laura Jean Stankiewicz, who sadly passed away from uterine cancer in 2020, has shifted to a more encompassing community event,” said Kate McBrearty, VJH Foundation executive director. “What Oliver and Marie have achieved in amplifying The Movement forward and supporting cancer care in such a short time is astounding. We are in awe of their results.”

More than $75,000 has been raised over two years through the Movement Run with 100 per cent of the proceeds donated to the McMurtry-Baerg Cancer Centre. To learn more visit

READ MORE: Donations boost Vernon immigrant bursary program

READ MORE: Okanagan women’s voices speak up for Indigenous History Month

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Vernon’s Oliver Stankiewicz (second from right) and his partner, Marie Atticus (centre), present a cheque for $45,232.40, the proceeds from their second Move4Mom Relay to Dr. Ed Hardy (McMurtry-Baerg Cancer Centre), Sarah Pruckl (VJHF Board) and Kristen Megyesi (McMurtry–Baerg Cancer Centre). (Contributed)

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