The Brain Train is about to depart – Will you get on board?
Thirty years ago, just three years after Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada was founded, the world was introduced to what would become a classic holiday book – not to mention one of my favourites – The Polar Express. While you might best remember the Tom Hanks movie version, this heartwarming book has become one of the National Education Association’s Teachers’ Top 100 Books for Children and one of the Top 100 Picture Books of all time according to School Library Journal.
The story features a young boy who boards a magical train journeying to the North Pole. When he’s offered whatever gift he wants, he asks for a bell from one of the reindeer’s harnesses. When the boy rings the bell, both he and his sister are captivated by its sound. However, his parents cannot hear the bell. The narrator (the same young boy now an adult) reflects that “At one time, most of my friends could hear the bell, but as years passed, it fell silent for all of them. Though I’ve grown old, the bell still rings for me, as it does for all who truly believe.”
Coincidentally, a train rolls by our London, Ontario office several times each day. When I hear that familiar sound, I like to think it’s our own Polar Express. Perhaps that’s what inspired our holiday campaign this year. For the five Tuesdays of December, starting on Giving Tuesday, we’re boarding our own version of the Polar Express: the Brain Train. We’ll make stops in Calgary, Winnipeg, Hamilton, Toronto, and Moncton, visiting patients, caregivers, advocates and survivors who can still hear the bell ringing for our cause.
I hope you’ll come on board the Brain Train and, with your donation, ring that bell for Canadians who need so desperately to believe.
Yours in gratitude,