It’s Our Hospital – Our Own Groundhog Day!

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It’s Our Hospital
February 12th: Our Own Groundhog Day!

By John Walker, PECM Hospital Foundation Director

Groundhog Day was on February 2nd; Wiarton Willie saw his shadow, dashing hopes for an early spring. Our winter is going to be long!

So how does this relate to the work of the Hospital Foundation? Well, on a very sunny February 12th Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, came to our hospital to announce that the province is providing a grant to help with development plans of the Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital. This is exciting because it helps to cement government support for the new Hospital build and funding approval process. Hoskins actually said, “This hospital will be built”! Good news deserves creativity, so let’s adopt February 12th as our own County Groundhog Day, but with a prediction of good things to come (more snow or not) for our NEW hospital!

We need to continue to build awareness of what’s happening with our new hospital build and the work of the Foundation through our Friends of Our Hospital awareness events. We need your help.

On February 10th Fran Renoy did a fine job speaking about the hospital at Wellington Library. Now Don Wakefield, a resident of the Edward building, is hosting a Friends of Our Hospital event. Don, a Director on the Foundation Board, says, “I am having a Friends of Our Hospital gathering because I support the Hospital and want to spread the word and answer any question folks might have about our new hospital build and the role of the Foundation. The doctors and nurses there were very kind and helpful to my wife in her struggle with COPD. The more often people hear of the plans for a new hospital, the more likely they are to come up with the community funding necessary to see it built.”

In my previous article I highlighted that when we visit the hospital we are all the same; it doesn’t matter if we are long-time locals, newcomers or summer visitors. Don and his family were weekenders and yearly holiday residents of the County from 1973 to 2002 and permanent residents since then. Don, like many summer residents, used the hospital for family needs, and as Don emphasizes, “Having a clean and welcoming hospital to service their inevitable cuts and bruises was an important part of the enjoyment of coming to the County. “

This week’s article is also a bit of a shout out to say things are looking good and we want more folks to host Friends of Our Hospital events. These events are meant for information sharing only, not fundraising. Like Don’s, the gatherings would be entirely yours to plan and host. They can be as informal or as formal as you like. Another Foundation Board member or representative would attend to talk very briefly about how plans for the new hospital are progressing. You can be creative. Your event could be a morning kitchen table coffee gathering, an afternoon/early evening patio/pool party with cool drinks or cocktails, a club gathering (gym, swim, yoga, books, gardening, service clubs, etc.), beach walk and picnic, guys gathering at a favourite chip truck or pub, after church lunch gathering at home or a local restaurant – just people getting together in support of Our NEW Hospital.

It’s been a long winter, but our Groundhog Day was very special to the County!

If you would like to host a Friends of Our Hospital gathering, or for more information, please contact Penny at 476 1008 ext. 4503, Briar at ext. 4425, or Marthe at ext. 4502. You can also visit our website at