Foundation Notes: Penticton Hospital construction to start in spring

The Tree of Dreams campaign is without a doubt the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation’s biggest fundraiser of the year.

The Tree of Dreams campaign is without a doubt the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation’s biggest fundraiser of the year.

But there’s something different this time around —there is no set campaign goal and no actual list of individual pieces of medical equipment we need to purchase for Penticton Regional Hospital.  At least, not yet.

Instead, there’s a much more different goal — the $20-million campaign to acquire all the medical equipment for the new Patient Care Tower at PRH. The theme of this year’s Tree of Dreams campaign is “A New Beginning,” reflecting the latest chapter in Penticton’s hospital history.

The PRH expansion will create a number of new hospital facilities for decades to come. The tower will include 84 new single-bed rooms, new surgical rooms, ambulatory care clinics and more. Phase 2 will see the PRH Emergency Department expanded to almost four times its current size. Construction of the $325-million project is due to start this spring and be completed by late 2019.

It’s heartwarming to see so many donations come in from residents throughout the South Okanagan-Similkameen.

* * *

Our sincere thanks to the Vassilaki family who have generously donated $10,000 to the hospital. John Vassilaki, of course, also contributed 12 years of his life to the community during his four terms on Penticton city council.  John is joined by his wife Barb, brother Nick and wife Helen, sister Athena and mother Paraskevi in making the donation towards the new tower, in honour of their late father/husband Florio who passed away in 1997.

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We are also extremely grateful to the South Okanagan division of the RCMP Veterans’ Association. The organization, which represents some 80 retired RCMP officers and auxiliary constables from Summerland to Osoyoos and Keremeos, has donated $10,000 to the PRH campaign.

The donation, which gained overwhelming approval at their annual general meeting in November, reflects the RCMP association’s mandate of supporting its members and the communities in which they live.

* * *

Don’t miss a special dinner and post-New Years celebration hosted by the Indo-Canadian community on Sunday, Jan. 3 at the Penticton Seniors Drop-In Centre. The fundraiser for the PRH Patient Care Tower campaign includes a fantastic dinner and entertainment by the musical group En Karma. Tickets are $45 each. For more information call Amar Kahlon at 250-809-0968, Preet Dhaliwal at 250-460-0802 or Jaswinder Grewal at 250-809-7560.

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Kudos to the Survivorship dragon boat team of breast cancer survivors who donated $3,000 to the SOS Medical Foundation’s campaign.  The money stems from their sold-out Boob Tour Comedy Show fundraiser at the Penticton Lakeside Resort on Oct. 1. Survivorship plans to bring the show back again in 2016.

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Dozens of teddy bears will be making their way into young patients’ arms following surgery at PRH and the Summerland Health Centre.  The Penticton Shriners delivered the bears purchased through the Signature BC Liquor Store at the Penticton Plaza. Pat Wand also presented armloads of plush toys from the proceeds of her ongoing bottle collection efforts at Marketplace IGA. Thanks to everyone involved!

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Members of the Penticton Hospital Auxiliary and Summerland Health-Care Auxiliary have visions of air travel dancing in their heads these days. Both organizations are raffling a pair of airline tickets to anywhere WestJet flies.  Draw date is Dec. 21 for the Penticton auxiliary and Dec. 22 for Summerland. Stop by the PRH gift shop or the Summerland Thrift Store on Victoria Road to pick up a $5 raffle ticket.

John Moorhouse is the development and communications officer for the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation.

 

 

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