National Volunteer Week Presents Dean Kroetsch
It’s National Volunteer Week (April 12 – 18) and time to recognize and celebrate Canada’s 13.3 million volunteers. Caring and community service are fundamental values at ATCO and are supported through the ATCO EPIC annual fundraising campaign and the ATCO EPIC Time to Give program. This week, ATCOinsite will be profiling a few of our dedicated employee volunteers.
Dean Kroetsch, Operations Manager for the ATCO Power Sheerness Generating Station, has always been an active member of the Hanna community, but when it comes to fundraising for the battle against Leukemia, he is inspired by his father, a Leukemia survivor.
“I think people are hard-pressed to find someone that isn’t affected by blood cancers, either having friends or family diagnosed, or perhaps even themselves,” he explains. “My father is a survivor of Leukemia. He had a bone marrow transplant 25 years ago. He’s been graced with 14 grandchildren since being diagnosed and treated and he’s still alive and kicking today!”
Dean ran his first marathon last fall to fundraise for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Canada.
“I had never run more than a 10 km distance before, but it seemed an endurance event like a marathon would be an appropriate way to honour my Dad’s victory over leukemia,” he explains. “It was an awesome experience! I learned a great deal about myself that I never knew before. It truly is a test of mental and physical fortitude.”
As his fellow marathoners know, the challenges go beyond just the race and include the months of preparation and miles of lonely road training beforehand. He credits the support of his friends, family and coworkers as encouragement to see his goal to the finish. Dean raised $5,350 during his run and ATCO matched the $3,850 that had been donated from employees, for a total of $9,200 raised.
During the same marathon, Dean also ran a side campaign for Kids Cancer Care, ATCO Power’s 2014 feature charity. Calling the campaign ‘Put Your Heart Into It,’ Dean vowed to keep his heart rate above 140 beats per minute during the run. He pledged a $10 penalty for every kilometre that his heart fell below the mark and his co-workers pledged $1 for each kilometre that kept his heart rate up. This raised another $1,570 in pledges for Kids Cancer Care.
Dean is running another half marathon on May 31 with the goal of raising $10,000 for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Canada. To donate go to: http://www.tinyurl.com/deanpowerteam. All donations from ATCO employees are matched by ATCO through the ATCO EPIC program.