MS Carnation Campaign
The Carnation Campaign is a long standing tradition at the MS Society of Canada.
Each year on Mother’s Day weekend, thousands of volunteers in more than 280
communities across Canada show their commitment to finding a cure for MS by
selling carnations on street corners, shopping malls and other public spaces.
This year’s campaign, running from May 9th - 13th, 2012, will mark its 36th year,
raising more than $45 million since its inception in 1976.
The campaign coincides with Mother’s Day to honour and celebrate mothers who are living with multiple sclerosis,
a disease that affects women three times more than men. Red and white carnations have symbolized motherhood since
the establishment of Mother’s Day in 1908 and now they also represent hope for people with MS.
Public awareness is a key component of the MS Carnation Campaign as the month of
May also signifies MS Awareness Month. The campaign helps engage Canadians in the
issues affecting those persons living with MS and the important work the
MS Society of Canada does to find a cure and help improve quality of life.
Many politicians have participated in the campaign including Pierre Trudeau, Brian
Mulroney and Stephen Harper. The MS Carnation Campaign is typically launched on Parliament Hill
with MPs as they head into Question Period, usually a few days prior to Mother’s Day.
Canadians have one of the highest rates of multiple sclerosis in the world, with
an estimated 55,000 – 75,000 currently living with the disease and 1,000 new
cases every year. MS costs the Canadian economy over $1 billion
annually in lost productivity and healthcare expenses.
And while there has been great progress in research and treatments, there is
presently no cure.
The MS Society of Canada is a National organization with seven regional divisions.
It is the only national voluntary organization in Canada that supports both MS research and services
for people with MS and their families. The MS Society of Canada’s mission is to
be a leader in finding a cure for multiple sclerosis and enable people affected
by MS to enhance their quality of life.
For more information about the MS Carnation Campaign or the MS Society of Canada,
please contact Freya Potter at 1-800-268-7582 ext. 3157 or via e-mail at