On the north shores of Lake Erie sits the idyllic community of Port Rowan, Ontario.
It is a beautiful community whose residents, businesses, and visitors for three years now have joined together with the very popular Twins Ice Cream Parlour on the Civic holiday weekend to raise awareness about the scourge of Lyme disease and to raise funds for CanLyme in support of research.
Over $37,000 dollars has been raised which has greatly helped CanLyme provide funding to young scientists from universities across Canada for various research projects through our Venture Grants program. Several PhD students have had their projects funded, and with funding such as this we will continue to build the much needed body of scientific expertise in Canada to help tackle this global epidemic.
The fundraising came about after local resident Kasia Kusnierz passed away as a result of complications of Lyme disease. Clayton Woodward, friend of the Kusnierz’ and owner of Twins Ice Cream Parlour, organizes this event each year in memory of his friend Kasia.
Tremendous community support has turned this into an annual event.
Other businesses such as the local Wiggan’s Foodland grocery store, nearby McDonald’s restaurant in Simcoe, Inner Bay Marina in St. Williams, the Fin & Feather Marina located on North shore Lake Erie on Long Point Bay, and more have thrown their support behind the fundraiser.
There is so much research to be done. Testing currently available in Canada is poor and cannot rule out Lyme disease at any stage of the illness so we must find a better method and this requires scientists who in turn require funding.
Diagnosis is missed in most cases unless the individual is one of the few who get the identifiable ‘bull’s eye” rash. Most people get no rash and those who do get a rash, it seldom takes the bull’s eye form.
Treatment for Lyme disease is currently limited to 3 weeks or so of antibiotics but that it is not enough for many who have the chronic form of the disease which sadly is most people with Lyme disease in Canada because of poor diagnostics and physician education. Researching better treatment protocols further requires research so that our physicians can have the proper tools to treat their often very sick Lyme disease patients.
Building research capacity in Canada for this disease is paramount.
CanLyme says thank-you for the wonderful contributions, effort and continued support!