For the first four years of his life, Drayden ‘Dray’ Brimble has been the inspiration behind the ‘Dray’s Field of Dreams’ fundraising events, organized by his family.
Dray was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis within the first few months of his life. Four years ago, the Brimble family started fundraising through the University Hospitals Kingston Foundation (UHKF) to support the Cystic Fibrosis Clinic at Kingston Health Sciences Centre’s (KHSC) Hotel Dieu site. Their goal: To give hope and support to other families dealing with the disease.
“Since starting our cystic fibrosis journey, I have made it my mission to assist families dealing with similar daily challenges,” said Jennifer Brimble, Drayden’s mother, who gathered with representatives from UHKF, KHSC, Hotel Dieu, and, specifically, those working in pediatrics and the Cystic Fibrosis Clinic. The group gathered on Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019 at Hotel Dieu, where the family presented UHKF with two cheques totally $20,774. Those funds were raised through ‘Dray’s Field of Dreams’ fundraisers in 2019 alone.
In 2019, the family organized two fundraising events: a baseball tournament and a fashion show. The $20,774 raised through those efforts brings ‘Dray’s Field of Dreams’ four-year fundraising total to $50,629. Those funds will be used to assist families dealing with cystic fibrosis with costs that are not covered by insurance, such as vitamins, medications, and other expenses like transportation to appointments.
“We are incredibly proud and appreciative of the commitment and hard work the Brimble family has shown towards supporting patients and families at the Cystic Fibrosis Clinic,” said Dr. Richard van Wylick, Deputy Head of Pediatrics for KHSC. “This financial support will make a positive difference for families facing cystic fibrosis when they need it most.”
According to UHKF, cystic fibrosis is the most common fatal genetic disease affecting children and young adults in Canada. The disease affects the digestive system and the lungs, and presently there is no cure for the disease. An estimated one in every 3,600 children born in Canada has cystic fibrosis.
“I have been extremely fortunate to have supportive friends, family and local businesses helping raise awareness for cystic fibrosis,” Jennifer Brimble said. “I am beyond thankful to everyone that has helped us raise more than $50,000, and I hope one day soon a cure is found.”
For those with UHKF, the fundraising efforts are deeply appreciated, as they will help ease the financial burden faced by many families of children with cystic fibrosis. “This gift will help families get the support they need so their children can stay healthy,” said Evelyn Maizen, a Member of the Board of Directors for UHKF.