October 12, 2012, OTTAWA (CIS) – The CIS Women’s Basketball Coaches Association proudly announced Friday its fundraising initiative to raise money for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation – and other related charities – is up and running for a sixth straight year.

The Shoot for the Cure campaign has proven an overwhelming success since it was launched in the fall of 2007 with over half a million dollars in donations ($512,394.58). For the first time last season, all CIS women’s basketball programs participated in the campaign.

At the 2012 CIS championship last March in Calgary, the WBCA presented a cheque for $98,706.92 to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation, while an additional $22,541.78 was amassed by schools that elected to donate their fundraised money to local or provincial organizations, bringing the 2011-12 Shoot for the Cure overall total to $121,248.70.

In the first four years of the initiative, the WBCA had presented cheques of $50,320.87, $81,512.96, $94,650.96 and $104,763.53 to the CBCF, with another $82,439.34 going to local organizations.

Once again this year, CIS schools will raise money through regular season games, non-conference matches, tournaments and special events.

The Bishop’s University Gaiters kick off the 2012-13 activities this weekend in Sherbrooke, Que., with their Reebok Shoot for the Cure tournament. The four-team competition runs from Friday to Sunday.

“We are excited to be back to do our part to fight this brutal disease,” says Jeff Speedy, University of New Brunswick head coach and Shoot for the Cure project manager. “It was great to push our total over half a million dollars last year and it was also great that for the first time, all CIS women’s basketball teams participated. The goal is to keep our level of support at 100% and do everything we can to raise awareness and money for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.”

The 2012-13 Shoot for the Cure schedule is currently comprised of 45 events on 40 campuses across the country. More events will be announced over the next few weeks. A total of 44 universities compete in CIS women’s basketball.

The fundraising initiative was the brainchild of Rod Gilpin, the long-time bench boss of the Bishop’s women’s program now in his fifth season as head coach of the Gaiters’ men’s team.