UPDATE: The family of baby Alejo has confirmed on their GoFundMe page that he died peacefully on Feb. 25. The fundraising campaign has now been closed, and the family has stated that they will donate most of the funds raised to infant cancer treatment programs and research.
If you’re interested in raising a glass to a good cause, a North Vancouver craft brewery might have the perfect beer for you.
North Point Brewing is selling cans and pouring pints in their brewery of a special edition beer to raise funds and awareness for a newborn baby from the North Shore who is suffering from a rare form of cancer that could require an expensive surgery in the United States.
North Point co-owner Liam Jeffries – a longtime friend of the Angel family – has opened his heart, and his taps, in an effort to help the family reach their fundraising goal.
Alejo IPA is the new beer, a brew that is very similar to North Point’s staple offering Life of Riley Hazy IPA, with a couple of "secret ingredients" added to the mix.
“We’ve made it with love and positive vibes,” says Jeffries, who has been good friends with Alejo’s uncle Felipe since they were both high school students in West Vancouver.
The story certainly has generated a big response from the public. Jeffries says North Point has had some of their busiest sales days ever since a couple of stories from Vancouver media outlets ran earlier this week.
“It’s overwhelming, in a good way,” says Jeffries. “'Community' is a word we use all the time. The community rallied and helped us through COVID, and we just wanted to give back.”
Jeffries says a portion of sales from all cans and in-store pours of Alejo IPA – it is only available at the brewery, located at 266 First St. East in North Vancouver – will go to the family’s GoFundMe campaign, although he didn’t have an exact donation percentage figured out yet. They’ve already filled 2,500 cans with the brew though, and are aiming to get that number up to 10,000. As long as people are buying, they’ll keep selling until the fundraising goal is reached, says Jeffries.
Regardless of how many suds are sold, the brewery’s campaign has already done wonders in raising awareness of the family’s plight. As of Thursday, the GoFundMe campaign had raised more than $285,000 of their $500,000 goal.
“The community is just so amazing,” says Jeffries. “It’s unbelievable to see so many people from all over come together and rally and help baby Alejo.”