“It’s very much a community thing,” Williams Lake Safer Community co-ordinator Dave Dickson says of the annual Cops for Cancer Jail and Bail taking place Sept. 12 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Spirit Square in Williams Lake.
“Last year we had in excess of 20 people. Various businesses put their staff in jail and we raised over $20,000. Every penny goes to the children, and a chance to go to Camp Good Times if they would like to.”
Registrations for the Jail and Bail continue to trickle in and are up to almost 20, Dickson says.
“I have to follow up with some businesses that have said count us in. Next Monday we’ll be pushing hard.”
There will also be a barbecue compliments of M&M Meat Shop.
“I can’t say enough about Uli and Tom at M&M Meats. They come to us you know. Last year at the 11th hour we had to find someone and we went to Uli and with no questions asked, immediately her and Tom were out and did an amazing event,” Dickson says, adding that New World Coffee and Tea House will supply the coffee in the morning.
Triple P Sanitation will provide the outhouse facilities, and several other volunteers will be out lending a hand during the day.
“Karen Grosso from Canadian Cancer Society takes the lead on collecting the money and doing the paper work,” he adds.
Even if people cannot afford to pay for someone’s bail, there is an opportunity to make donations during the event.
“A business may come along and say ‘here’s $10 or $15.’ Times are tough out there and we totally respect that. We’re grateful for a penny. We don’t want to be forceful or anything.”
He says he is thankful for the people who are contributing.
Those in jail are usually accompanied by several others, and Dickson says there’s been as many as 10 to 13 people in there at once.
“The general manager of Heartland Toyota was put in custody, and for his bail he had to raise x amount of dollars. When he got out he said he’d put $100 for everyone that was in jail, plus what he’d just raised.”
Two days after the Jail and Bail, Dickson, along with Williams Lake RCMP Const. Chris Ives, will depart from Prince George to Prince Rupert for the Cops for Cancer ride.
Since the beginning of May, Dickson has cycled more than 2,400 kilometres to prepare for the ride.
Chuckling, he says his co-worker has done almost the same.
“He’s much younger than I am, so I have to be in better shape than him because I’m a senior.”
The riders will be launched from a school on the north side in Prince George to travel west.
“We leave Vanderhoof on Saturday morning and ride to Fort St. James and have lunch. The second day is a 175-km ride. Last year our longest was 193 km and we rode from Mackenzie to Prince George. We averaged 27.5 km an hour moving speed.”
It’s a fun thing, Dickson says of the ride.
He estimates there will be around 26 riders; a few have had to bow out because of health complications or duty obligations.