Following a successful pilot project last year, the City of Toronto, the David Cornfield Melanoma Fund and the Douglas Wright Foundation have expanded a public health program to provide free sunscreen in select City parks this summer.
The Health Canada-approved SPF 30 broad-spectrum sunscreen will be available at 50 dispensers located in City parks along the waterfront, spanning nearly 50 kilometres from Marie Curtis Park to Rouge Beach.
Crews provided by the melanoma foundations will maintain and stock the dispensers. The two foundations are covering all costs, with the City providing locations and administrative support. Last year’s pilot involved placing dispensers in five parks along the downtown waterfront. The pilot won the 2017 Canadian Dermatology Association Public Education Award.
“Our waterfront parks are well-loved and well-used by Torontonians and visitors alike,” said Mayor John Tory. “With the success of the pilot and expansion of this program, it’s great to see that so many will be able to enjoy our common grounds with easy access to sun safety.”
“Although preventable, skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in Canada,” said Danielle Paterson, Executive Director of the David Cornfield Melanoma Fund and a representative for the Douglas Wright Foundation. “Melanoma, the deadliest skin cancer, is one of the fastest rising cancers in Canada. On this Melanoma Monday, we are proud to expand our partnership with the City of Toronto. Our sunscreen dispensers will help raise awareness of melanoma and sun safety, while providing sun protection for thousands of Torontonians.”
“I encourage everyone to get outside and enjoy summer activities in our great city now that the warmer weather is upon us,” said Dr. Eileen de Villa, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health. “Following simple safety tips when outdoors, such as applying sunscreen regularly, wearing sunglasses and seeking shade, can help people protect themselves from the sun. This initiative is a great way to help people protect themselves and promote good health during summer months.”
The program’s social media hashtag is #besunsafe. A website, http://www.besunsafe.ca, provides more information about the program, sun safety tips and a map showing dispenser sites once they are installed, expected by the end of June.
The David Cornfield Melanoma Fund is a Canadian charity that saves lives from melanoma by raising awareness, promoting prevention and supporting research. Visit http://www.dcmf.ca for program, research and impact information.
The Douglas Wright Foundation is devoted to fighting melanoma in Canada by increasing awareness, educating the public about early detection and preventative measures, and fostering partnerships between like-minded organizations. More information is available at http://www.douglaswrightfoundation.com.
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