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Gala helps pave way for foundation initiatives

By Brian Oliver, The Graphic

Last week's annual gala brought in a record total of $161, 322. (The Graphic)

Last week's annual gala brought in a record total of $161, 322. (The Graphic)

It was a record setting night at last week's annual Portage District General Hospital Foundation Gala Evening.

The seventeenth edition of the Gala – which featured a dinner and live auction - fetched a record amount of $161, 322 for the foundation, funds that are vital to support its many ongoing and future projects.

To see that kind of support is phenomenal,” says Erin Miller, who has been at the helm of the PDGHF for the past half-decade as its executive director. “(Those funds enable the foundation) to commit to awesome projects that improve healthcare in Portage and all that wouldn't be possible without all of our many volunteers that are setting up, donating prizes and being there that night. It's just incredible.”

A portion of the monies raised at the gala, which was moved to the MNP Building on Island Park to accommodate a larger audience, will be used to launch a teddy bear initiative along with renovations to the hospital's obstetrics area.

We wanted to see every kid that comes to the hospital that has to stay over night and have surgery have a teddy bear,” adds Miller, an idea pitched to the foundation by the hospital's very own Dr. Bernard Thess. “Dr. Thess came up with the idea and the foundation loved it and thanks to the support of the gala we get to make that a reality.”

Chair Dale Lyle announced at the event that the foundation will be moving forward with renovations to the hospital's obstetrics area. However, still in the project's infancy, costs and exact renovations have yet to be determined.

Formerly hosted at the Glesby Centre, the foundation opened the gala doors to a record high 350 people and raised over 100K in the live auction alone.

The completion of the foundation's much anticipated heliport project is expected in the coming weeks.



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