WINNIPEG -- The Canadian Cancer Society’s flagship fundraising event, Relay for Life, forged ahead this weekend without breaking health orders prohibiting gatherings.

The event looked a little different this year, transforming into a one-hour online event enjoyed by relay teams across the country.

“Everyone is committed to changing the future of cancer,” said Tope Taiwo, communications lead for Relay for Life. “It’s not a journey anyone should do alone.”

The fundraising goal for Winnipeg was exceeded with almost $73,000 raised, thanks to the commitment of about 125 participants split between 24 teams.

“It was so exciting to see Canadians come together for a common cause of funding groundbreaking research in the face of cancer,” said Taiwo.

Saturday night’s proceedings included stories of cancer survival, including one person’s journey with pandemic-related treatments delays.

“The community still remains strong despite COVID. The community is still able to show that the community is greater than cancer, life is greater than cancer,” said Taiwo.

Some relay traditions remained, with participants having the option of placing luminaries in their homes to remember their loved ones.

“That element was still there even though we are still virtual, and we could have a moment to remember people we have lost due to cancer,” Taiwo said.

Nationally, about $3,500,000 was raises for cancer research.

The hope is for next year’s event to be in-person.