Former NHL star Theo Fleury is set to launch a new campaign to raise awareness about child sexual abuse and raise money for non-profit groups working to prevent it.
It's called the Victor Movement, and Theo will kick it off tomorrow with the inaugural Victor Walk - a 10 advocacy day walk from Toronto to Ottawa.
"We hope that the Victor Walk will create a greater awareness surrounding the number of children who have been sexually abused in Canada and shed a light on the lack of support that is provided to those affected," Theo said.
Theo and his team will set off from the child sexual abuse monument in Toronto at 8 am ET, and stop in towns and cities in Ontario along the way (Oshawa, Peterborough, Havelock, Madoc, Elm Tree, Maberly, McCullough, and Stittsville).
On Thursday, May 23rd, around 2 pm ET, they plan to arrive in Ottawa on the steps of Parliament Hill, where Theo - along with survivors and supporters - will speak out about child sex abuse and how it has impacted their lives.
"We are asking Canadians to rally and join together in Ottawa on May 23rd, to speak out against those who continue to steal the innocence of so many," Theo said.
"We are also encouraging those affected by sexual abuse to come forward and have a voice, knowing that they will be supported by the whole of our movement because only together will we be able to make a difference."
That same day, May 23rd, 22 other communities across the country will have their own Victor Walks to show their support, raise awareness and promote healing.
On the website, Theo writes, "while pedophiles look to destroy, the Victor looks to move from victimhood and coping to overcoming and being Victorious in life."
He goes on to write, "I loved my years in hockey, I wouldn't trade them for anything, but the Victor Movement is my life's work, my legacy. I know if we all band together, if we raise our voices, and find our courage we will be able to change the way that childhood sexual abuse is seen in our country."
All the money and donations raised through the Victor Walk will be divided equally between three organizations working to stop child sex abuse and help people who've been victims.
They are Little Warriors, the Quinte Sexual Assault Centre and Siksika Nations.
Money raised from local Victor Walks will go to Little Warriors for its 'Be Brave Ranch,' - a long term treatment centre for children, the first of its kind.
George is offering his support as one of the Victor Walk ambassadors.
You can find out more about the Victor Walk and the local Victor Walk events on May 23 at victorwalk.com.
You can register for your local walk, sign up to collect pledges, sign the Victor Walk petition, and/or make donation by clicking on this link.
And be sure to read Theo's story about why it's called the Victor Walk. It's a poignant experience that ends with an empowering philosophy for life: "You can look left and right, but you can never go backwards... only forwards."
And here is Theo's Victor Walk schedule.
May 14 Toronto to Oshawa
May 15 Oshawa to Pontypool
May 16 Pontypool to Peterborough
May 17 Peterborough to Havelock
May 18 Havelock to Madoc
May 19 Madoc to Elm Tree
May 20 Elm Tree to Maberly
May 21 Maberly to McCullough
May 22 McCullough to Stittsville
May 23 Stittsville to Ottawa
Plus, this Friday, May 17, in support of the Victor Walk, we're running an encore of George's interview with Theo from earlier this season.
That's at 11:30 pm and 2:30 am but with the Stanley Cup playoffs, the schedule can change so be sure to check the CBC schedule, just in case.
Theo has also written a memoir about his life, hockey career and being a victim of sexual abuse. It's called 'Playing With Fire'.
And there's a documentary of the same name that aired on HBO Canada, which you can watch right here.