Cancer has been the leading cause of deaths amongst children and young adults. It’s estimated that two out of five Canadians are expected to develop the disease in their lifetime. Even though a cure has yet to be found, scientists are well on the way to figuring out how it can be stopped and treated without the risk of it returning.

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Stand Up To Cancer has played a key role in building awareness and funds for the cause since September 2008, when it first ran a televised telethon that managed to raise over $100 million. It was broadcasted in over 170 countries through the four major television networks in the United States: ABC, NBC, FOX and CBS. As a result of the success achieved south of the border, Stand Up To Cancer has announced a new partnership with Canadian broadcasters, which includes CBC, CTV, City TV and Global, and is appropriately Stand Up To Cancer Canada. This will be the first time that all networks from across Canada and America will simultaneously air the one-hour fundraising special.

“Modern Family” actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson was one amongst a selection of television stars who joined in on the announcement of the Canadian launch. “You don’t see the studio and the television networks working together very often in the U.S., Canada or anywhere else in the free world.” said Ferguson whose husband is a cancer survivor. “We’re very fortunate and grateful to have the extraordinary support of major television networks in Canada. With their unified support we will share our message across this great country. Every single Canadian is touched by cancer, whether it be in our home lives or amongst family or friends.”

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Alongside Ferguson, was Canadian screenwriter, actor, comedian and celebrity ambassador for Stand Up To Cancer Canada, Dan Aykroyd. The performer, best known for his comedic flare and personality in the film Ghostbusters, acknowledged the crowd of supporters for the initiative and reinforced the idea that cancer has and will touch everyone in the room.

“Every hour of every day, 22 Canadians will be diagnosed with some type of cancer,” said Aykroyd. “In my own life cancer has taken my neighbour, my great friend Barbara Orbison, Gilda Radner, my writing partner Tom Davis and two days ago my business manager of 30 years, Barbara Bryson.”

Stand Up To Cancer urges people to continue to be aware and spreads the message that the disease will continue touch lives until something substantial is done. People need to unite and continue to support each other.

On September 5 at 8/7c, the event will be aired on major television networks across the U.S. and Canada including ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, CBC, City TV, CTV and Global.

Words By. Jelicia Saulter + Photos Courtesy Of. Ryan Emberley