Inside Story: The Cheung Family
Doing Extraordinary Things Together
Giving back to Wellspring is a family affair for the Cheung family. Billy, his wife Gail and their two children Mya (13) and Ben (10) have been actively supporting Wellspring for more than five years. “We believe it is important to ensure that Mya and Ben understand the importance of giving back and that ordinary people can do extraordinary things if they do it together,” says Gail.
Their family was first introduced to Wellspring when Billy was approached to sit on the Board of Directors in 2011. From there Billy began participating in Wellspring’s annual cycling event, the Wellspring Peloton Challenge. Over the past five years and with the help from his family, Billy has successfully raised over $62,000 for Wellspring. As well as being a rider, Billy served as chair of the Peloton committee for three years and has played an instrumental role in recruiting riders and being a spokesperson for media opportunities. The generosity doesn’t stop there. The Cheung family has kindly opened their home numerous times as a meeting place for early morning weekend training rides and post-event reunion celebrations.
Mya and Ben began supporting Wellspring through their own fundraising events. Together they held a used book sale that ran for two years and raised over $1100. They also sold hand-knitted hats and raised over $900. “I like seeing the outcome of all of the events,” says Mya. “I continue to fundraise for Wellspring because I want people to live their lives how they should live their lives, without sickness or worries.” Wellspring is always top of mind for Mya and Ben. Most recently, Mya was awarded the role of Principal for the Day at her school, where she implemented a “civvies day” where the students could wear their regular clothes instead of their uniform for a $1 or $2 donation towards the 2016 Peloton Challenge.
Billy’s participation in the Wellspring Peloton Challenge has always included the full support of his family. “My favourite part of the Peloton is when all of the riders are crossing the finish line and everyone is cheering,” says Ben. “I like when they are all dumping water on themselves. Seeing the event happen, meeting the cancer survivors and learning about what they have gone through makes me want to raise more money to help them.”
Mya and Ben take every opportunity to talk about Wellspring. Through their philanthropic initiatives they have also inspired their friends to participate in their fundraising events as well as in other opportunities in the community.
“Wellspring is an amazing organization, doing amazing things for the community,” says Gail. “It not only helps those on their own cancer journey but it also helps people who are supporting their loved ones. Our dream would be to have a Wellspring centre in every community.”