“Finding chemo”, Relay for Life, Dunedin.

iTeam Otago

iTeam Otago

This Saturday, New Zealand Cancer Society (non-government charity organisation) organised Relay for Life in Dunedin. These events spread around New Zealand for fundraising serve also the purpose of increasing the social awareness of the cancer and impact that it has on lives of families and caregivers as much as those who find themselves victims of this disease. Melanie and Grant organised iTeam from IS dep of Otago, and there have been a group of friends participating.

Survivals' Walk


The relay started with the “survivals walk”, where many people that won their personal battles initiated the relay.

After them, a massive crowd of others joined in for the 24hrs relay. Due to the extremely wet weather, the relay was cut short, and finished at midnight. Our team stayed strong and many people helped to make the effort as much enjoyable as the weather permitted.The Dunedin’s relay raised over $245k for the cancer society, from commercial and individual donations. iTeam managed close to $1000.

I cannot comprehend the scale and all implications that cancer has on lives on so many people. I also cannot understand, why causes like this require non-governmental movements and donations from individuals, to make a difference and to bring help and relief, while tax-payers money continue to be spend on supporting the government officials and are generally wasted on meaningless activities and infrastructures. The system for spending public money always was and will continue to be broken, and events like that are a clear indication of a broken system.

iTeam tent

iTeam tent

However, besides financial aspects there are also the social aspects that are probably even more important. There is something very powerful in a massive crowd united with a single idea. The idea today was of support and expressed solidarity with those who fight and those who help fighting the disease. To me, that seemed overwhelmingly much more valuable, than the amount of funds that the event has raised.

Some short videos from the event:

Kircio and Marni reunited

After 10 years, Kircio and Marni got together! ;o)

Kiril has been traveling for almost 2 weeks on south and north islands and managed to pop in to Dunedin on Sunday. That gave the opportunity for chatting and recollecting the amazing time from 10 years ago, in Birmingham. For everyone, that was there and belonged “to the club”, the 12 months of study in Birmingham, even though really tough and intense, left a special mark in everyone memories. It was really nice to recall the old times and bring back memories from the old times. Some things changed a lot (Kircio got his PhD and he is working in his dream job in European Union in Brussels), and some did not changed at all. We are quite the same, and it was really easy to click again and spend a great day together.