Real Men Can Cook Serves Up Succulent Dishes And Hope For A Little Girl With Cystinosis
70 Chefs And 800 Guests Come Out To Fundraise For Gabbie's Causeby Cambridge Now! Local News
Apr 12, 2011
Above: The Local chefs were welcomed by crowd
Real Men Can Cook is organized fundraising at its delicious, finest best. There is no shortage of integrity in this group as was evident every step of the way leading up to their 2011 cook-off.
Each year they invite local (non-professional) chefs to cook up one or more of their signature dishes. While most of us (yes, I was one of this year's contestants) are legends in our own minds, we are the heroes on our own turf-- where we truly reign supreme. We have a passion for creating beauty in food. Masters of the small range we rise and fall with raves (or not) from the people who love us most. Our families.
Real Men Can Cook is a non-profit one of a kind group which holds an annual event that brings community leaders together to offer up a tasty evening of food, fun and fundraising.
The RMCC (Real Mean Can Cook...but then you knew that) are made up of employees of the City of Waterloo in partnership with fellow employees of Waterloo Fire Rescue. This year they were thrilled to present their fourth annual event in support of the Cystinosis Awareness & Research Effort (CARE.) The venue was the prestigious St. George Banquet Hall in north Waterloo. The prize was to help a tremendous little girl named Gabbie overcome her health issues...and if that wasn't enough, the glory and admiration of friends, family and community.
This year there were nearly 70 would-be chefs who signed on to prove once again that Real Men Can Cook. Each chef prepared his tried and true recipe in quantities that allow taste testing throughout the evening. As part of the event, recipes were compiled in advance and a commemorative limited edition DVD cookbook was made available to those who attended the event.
Who is Gabbie Strauss?
Kitchener Waterloo Hope Ambassador Gabby Strauss was diagnosed with Cystinosis in January 2009 at 15 months old.
Cystinosis is a rare genetic disease in which the protein cystine cannot be removed by the cells in the body. As a result, cystine builds up crystalizing and killing the cell; slowly destroying the organs in the body. It's terribly exhausting to have Cystinosis and incredibly exhausting to be the caregivers.
Cystinosis is an "orphan" disease affecting about 50 people - mostly children - stricken with the disease in Canada. There only about 2000 children worldwide who share her problem.
Gabbie is an amazing human being. And since the diagnosis, she takes a cocktail of medicines every 6 hours day and night and will ultimately need hourly eye drops to prevent blindness. It's a lot for anyone to take let alone a 3 year old little girl.
However, like so many other kids who live to endure illness, Gabbie is a source of inspiration and has an uncanny way of making all that meet her smile with delight and amazement. She is no ordinary little girl. She has an uphill battle but she takes it all in stride.
The medication for Cystinosis is taken every six hours, but results in nausea and ulcers, and can cause seizures. Unapproved eye drops can be taken hourly to prevent blindness, but cause burning and stinging. Basically she is prepared to awaken 24/7 unless new research can be conducted to widen the gap between doses.
Founded in 2009, by Gabbie's family, the Cystinosis Awareness and Research Effort (CARE) is the only organization in Canada focused on finding better treatments and a cure for Cystinosis. CARE has partnered with the Cystinosis Research Foundation (CRF) in California, who since 2003 has funded over 70 research studies and fellowships, greatly advancing research and giving patients with Cystinosis great hope for the future. With such a rare disease affecting such a small population, research money is scarce to nonexistent and yet research on complicated diseases like Cystinosis often lead to advancements in other diseases.
With your help and the help of groups like Real Men Can Cook we will find a cure. Clinical trials for better treatments are underway and Dr. Stephanie Cherqui of the world renowned Scripts Research Institute has reversed Cystinosis in a mouse model. We are closing in on a cure and need your help and donations to terminate this disease forever.
Thank you Gabbie for Being You!!!
Video Produced by Modevation Media
Below: Thanks to Sean and Shannon at Tasty, Delicious Organic Mushrooms for helping out with My Real Man Entree. You can buy their incredible mushrooms at the Kitchener Market and the Cambridge Market.