Largest group hug-world record set by Ottawa
25] OTTAWA, Canada--More than 10,000 students and teachers
from 10 Ottawa-area schools joined forces Friday to shatter
the world record for the largest group hug (Bear hug).
The group hug, a fundraiser for cancer care in
the Capital, spanned from Laurier Street to the Pretoria Bridge
along the Rideau Canal.
"It's amazing that there's so many people doing
this for a good cause," Simon Tomlinson, a student at St.
Matthew's High School, told CTV News.
The group was able to raise
more than $110,000 for cancer care prior to the day's hug.
Organizers say they hope the total figure will reach $300,000.
Students and staff from 10 local schools sets new World Record
for bear hug on Friday, making Ottawa the Bear Hug Capital
of the world while also making a significant donation toward
cancer research and care. Photograph by : Pawel Dwulit/ The
Other participating schools were St. Peter
High School, Mother Theresa High School, Notre Dame High School,
Lester B. Pearson High School, St. Joseph High School, St.
Pius X High School, Sacret Heart High School, Immaculata High
School and St. Matthew High School, where the 2004's Bear
Hug set a world record before being overtaken by New Mexico.
“It takes a whole year of planning to make
this 10-second hug take place,” said Monique Amyot, an organizer.
“It happens so fast, but if you come to the event itself,
The original Bear Hug event was inspired by Grade
8 student Erin Gannon who passed away from cancer just days
after the record was broken. While the organizers of Bear
Hug II know the fundraising record will be tough to break,
getting the Bear Hug record back should be a lot easier.
been going door-to-door almost every night,” explains Grade
8 student Simon Tomlinson, who has collected over $1,000 and
currently sits as the school’s biggest fundraiser.
Photo by Darren Brown (enlarge
“I’ve reached my goal, but I want to keep going.”
Andrew van den Hoeven, whose two grandparents
have had to battle cancer, has raised more than $1,200 on
his own. “I went door to door every night and talked to my
family and friends. It’s for a good cause. My grandfather
is currently fighting cancer, so it’s the least I can do,”
says the 13-year-old Grade 8 student.
Using the bear hug project as the launching point
for such a massive fundraising effort is “a neat way” of collecting
money, continues Grade 8 student Andrew Van der Hoeven, St.
Matt’s second-biggest fundraiser, calling the potential record
grab a big motivator.
The first Bear Hug event was held in 2004
and had more than 5,100 students hug in the schoolyard behind
Matthew High School.
Notre Dame High School student Matthew Corluka
said this was a chance for students to do something special
for a good cause. “We’re coming together and putting our names
on the map for doing great things. That’s trying to raise
money to treat and eradicate cancer,” he said.
Proceeds from the fundraising effort will go to
Cancer research and patient care at CHEO, the Ottawa Hospital
and the Ottawa Senators Foundation.
The bear numbers:
Ten high schools
810 staff members,
200 bus drivers and
200 volunteers participating.
it al began:
Eliane's best friend Karine was diagnosed
with Cancer at the young age of 22 years old. She fought a
brave battle but lost her life to cancer at the young age
During her ilness she inspired everyone
around her to live life to the fullest.
In her honor and in the memory of many loved
FORCE was born and with it a year long commitment
to raise funds for patient care and cancer reserach.
here by May 2 to make your donation
The previous world record fot the largest
group hug involved 6,623 participants who gathered in Chamizal
Park in Juárez, Mexico on 25 September 2005.
are the rules for this record:
1. The numbers of participants are confirmed
by individuals signing their own names once only on a form
witnessed by two independent persons. no "ditto" marks accepted.
2. Participants must stand in a circular
ring formation, within arm's reach of the person either side
of them. The circle should only be one person deep - participants
in any inner rings will not be recognised.
3. The circle cannot fold in on itself
in any way.
4. Each person should put their right arm
round the waist of the person on their right, and their left
arm round the waist of the person on their left. At a given
signal, each participant should squeeze the person on either
side of him or her, holding the hug for a minimum of 10 seconds.