For most people raising close to $6,000 for the B.C. Cancer Agency would be considered a successful fundraiser, but for Nolan Sievert and Keegan Small that’s just the beginning.
The duo will be continuing their fundraising efforts this summer, selling lavender bunches throughout downtown Victoria and outside West Shore businesses, such as Superstore, throughout the end of July and all of August. Proceeds will go towards the cancer agency.
“Our goal at the beginning of last year was $500 and we raised almost $6,000 and we thought we didn’t stop when we reached our goal, so we thought why would we stop now? We can keep going,” said Small, who will be heading into his senior year at Belmont Secondary school in the fall.
The cause is close to their hearts.
On Dec. 17, 2016, Small’s mother was diagnosed with terminal metastatic breast cancer, which started in her breasts and has now spread.
When she was diagnosed she was given months to live, but after receiving cutting-edge treatments through the B.C. Cancer Agency, that has been extended to more than five years.
“Obviously it was tough, I didn’t know how to react. I don’t think anyone can be prepared for that moment knowing that your mom is going to die, but we’re doing everything we can to help her,” said Small of his mother being diagnosed.
“I just wanted to help them [the B.C. Cancer Agency] out since they’ve done amazing things for my family.”
While attending a two-week Global Leadership Academy camp at Brookes School in Shawnigan Lake last summer and wanting to help people with cancer, Sievert and Small came up with the idea to harvest lavender from Sievert’s family property in Metchosin to sell.
The second time around, the duo, who have been friends since middle school, have set the bar higher with a goal of $10,000 this summer.
So far, they have already raised $550, in cash and as part of an online fundraising campaign.
“Hopefully we can reach that [goal],” said Sievert, a former Belmont Secondary student who attends high school in Seattle. “Everyone has someone that they know or in their family that’s been touched by cancer.”
The online fundraising campaign can be found by searching Lavender for Cancer on gofundme.com.