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National ‘Lifeline’ award for Surrey mother who volunteered after blood-cancer ordeal

Tania Grim’s Schilly Award video is posted to Canadian Blood Services website
Surrey’s Tania Grim is pictured in video announcing her Schilly Award during a virtual recognition event hosted by Canadian Blood Services. (YouTube screenshot)

Tania Grim, a Surrey-area mother of four, has won an award from Canadian Blood Services for her work to “contribute significantly to recruitment or awareness of the need for blood, stem cells, or organs and tissues.”

The agency’s Schilly Award was given to Grim during an “Honouring Canada’s Lifeline” recognition event held virtually on Monday, Nov. 29. The annual gathering “celebrates the people and organizations at the heart of Canada’s blood system.”

“When Tania Grim was 34 years old, she learned that she had myelodysplastic syndrome, a cancer that impedes the production of blood cells,” a bio notes. “Chemotherapy and countless units of blood and platelets kept Tania alive, but the only effective long-term treatment was a transplant of stem cells. Fortunately, a suitable match was found in Germany and in 2017, transplant surgery succeeded.”

Once healthy enough, Grim began to volunteer at donor centres and promote the need for blood and stem cell donors.

(Story continues below video)

Grim’s story is told in a three-minute segment of the 90-minute “Honouring Canada’s Lifeline” event video, posted to and also YouTube.

The Schilly Award is named in honour of Abbotsford resident Nick (“Schilly”) Schilbach, who died of leukemia after efforts to spread the message of bone marrow donation through HipHopCanada.

Canadian Blood Services needs to fill 38,000 open appointments by Jan. 4, including more than 5,000 open spots in B.C. For details, visit

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Tom Zillich

About the Author: Tom Zillich

I cover entertainment, sports and news stories for the Surrey Now-Leader, where I've worked for more than half of my 30-plus years in the newspaper business.
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