FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – A Fort St. John resident has started a GoFundMe page for her friend, a mother of four, who was recently diagnosed with cancer.

Approximately sixteen months ago, Christina Wood was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer after visiting the local hospital, says her friend, Jodie Paul.

Wood had an unpleasant trip to the Fort St. John hospital where the mood in the room changed suddenly when the staff realized she needed emergency surgery, Wood says.

She recalls there was no time to book an ambulance or helicopter. Her husband had to drive her to Dawson Creek hospital.

Once there, she was rushed into surgery with a ruptured bowel. If she hadn’t been rushed in, she would not be here anymore, both Wood and Paul agree.

Wood has had to go through operations and treatments and has not been able to work since her issues began. Beyond the illness itself, this difficulty has been hard on Wood, who has always worked at least one job, the busy mom says.

Because she was self-employed and had her own business, which she had to close down, she cannot receive medical EI, Paul states on the GoFundMe page.

Paul says that income assistance will not help because she is married. Wood’s doctor will not put her on disability—possibly because she has been unable to see him.

Wood says that she has not seen her doctor since February.

Wood’s family doctor is leaving town and she has not been transferred to anyone else.

Paul explains that Wood’s husband’s medical plan only covers a percentage of the medications required by the entire family. With the high cost of her medications, Wood has had to decide whether or not to purchase her own medications or those of her family.

Her family and friends are unsure when Wood will be able to return to work, but it will not be in the near future, Paul says.

On the GoFundMe page, Paul explains that Wood was originally reluctant to ask the community for help in this way but eventually relented.

“Tina has been a vital part of this community for 43 years,” Paul writes, referring to Wood by a familiar nickname, “She’s a lifer here. She has selflessly given many, many times and would give you the shirt off her back if you needed it.”

“This community has rallied for other members… let’s rally around Tina and show her what local spirit can do.”

Wood says that the GoFundMe money will help the family catch up on medical bills, pay off debts, and pay for other daily expenses.

At the time of writing, the GoFundMe page is sitting at $3,275 donated from 40 donations.

Shailynn Foster

Shailynn Foster is a news reporter for energeticcity.ca. Shailynn has been writing since she was 7 years old, but only recently started her journey as a journalist. Shailynn was born and raised in Fort St. John and she watches way too much YouTube, Netflix and Disney+ during the week while playing DND on the weekends.

Grace Giesbrecht

Grace Giesbrecht is a news reporter for EnergeticCity.ca who recently graduated from Trinity Western University with a bachelor of arts in Media + Communications. She was born and raised just outside of Fort St. John. She began reporting for her university’s student newspaper and interned with Ottawa Life Magazine where she developed a passion for asking questions, telling stories, and the written word. In her free time, you can find her drinking coffee, snowboarding, or reading novels.