For gamers in the FutureFive universe, ReedPop will be associated with the world of PAX Online, Comic-Con and events from the Metaverse. All this is foreign to me, a mere gamer wannabe who long ago recognised my inability to master motion sickness in virtual environments means my dreams of making it as a pro in Minecraft will never happen.
ReedPop were brought to my attention for a completely different reason. They have raised $100K to fund research being undertaken by South Australian researcher Melissa Cantley, whose research is looking at biomarkers in patients with pre-cancerous conditions to identify those at high risk of developing further disease. One does not require a degree in rocket science to understand the importance of early detection.
Part of their fundraising was accomplished through PAX Online, a recent virtual event. Several initiatives took place to raise funds, including a 120-hour continuous live stream hosted by GenerOzity, which took place during PAX Online.
The live stream had a jam-packed creative schedule featuring cosplay, squat challenges, live cooking and even some magic. The PAX Australia team also live streamed Jack Box games, playing with fans and their communities, to raise money and awareness, and a trivia night was hosted at Reed HQ.
Cancer remains the biggest global killer. My informants from Rocketcomms report that by the end of this week in Australia, 820 people will have died from cancer. Here in New Zealand, it remains our single biggest cause of death, according to the Ministry of Health.
Some of you may recall that many of my reviews refer to my long-suffering darling wife, who is often portrayed as the anti-hero in my reviews. In real life, however she has been fighting a heroic battle with cancer for over 8 years. Each treatment has been followed by a period of remission. Recently we were told that there are no more treatment options available. Surgery is possible but is a highly dangerous option. We await each blood test and scan result with a certain amount of trepidation, and continue the fight, one day at a time.
This news release is significant to us, as well as the staff of Rocketcomms. Last year, they lost a colleague and close friend to cancer. For all of us, this is personal. It will be to many of you too.
As someone who has been around the workplace for over four decades, I've heard the word “toxic” used to describe work environments and relationships and experienced it in that context. It pales in comparison to the toxic nature of the drugs used to treat cancer patients. Melissa is one of the latest researchers who is in the early stages of her research, and Cure Cancer is dedicated entirely to funding early career researchers.
“This donation,” says Cure Cancer CEO Nikki Kinloch, "Will allow another early-career cancer researcher to take the next step in their research career and to continue the fight against cancer.
Let's hope that more of us are inspired to encourage the researchers who will face life-long challenges to unwrap the mysteries surrounding cancer.