Message from Parker Jones
Published Tuesday, January 31, 2023
Message from Parker Jones
Chair, Board of Directors, Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Foundation
It’s been a remarkable year. First, congratulations to our December Thunder Bay 50/50 Grand Prize winners Nick and Natalie Pace. Their year became especially extraordinary on December 30 when they took home over $2.53 million dollars with the winning ticket number. It’s amazing to see the smiles on their faces – a jackpot like that is truly life-changing.
The Thunder Bay 50/50 draw is life-changing for our patients, too. Last year, the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Foundation funded $5.6 million in Hospital equipment in 2022. That includes major purchases such as a new 3T MRI, a new Radialis unit (the made-in-Thunder Bay compression-free mammography alternative for women with denser breast tissue), and a new minimally invasive surgery (MIS) suite for safer surgery with faster recovery.
Much of those proceeds came directly from the Thunder Bay 50/50 draw itself. But 2022 also saw perennial fundraising favourites slowly returning to live, in-person events. Those included the Ascend Fundraising Solutions' Bachelors for Hope Charity Auction, the Tbaytel Motorcycle Ride for Dad, the Resolute Save a Heart Ball, Dancing with the Docs, and the Bearskin Airlines Hope Classic women's curling bonspiel, which hosted its last event in October after 25 successful years. We always knew how important these events were, but the reception they received after the pandemic underlined the special place these events have in people’s hearts.
Of course, the real story is the impact these fundraisers have on patient care. With a city and region so far from other centres, it’s important that we provide our patients with closer-to-home treatment options to reduce travel, improve safety, and ultimately improve outcomes. Your donations in 2022, whether through Thunder Bay 50/50 tickets or by direct donation, have changed the lives of so many in Northwestern Ontario.
We can’t wait to find out what 2023 will bring. At the Health Sciences Foundation, we’ll continue to rebuild our in-person events – more on that later in the year. Of course, we’ll also continue to support our Hospital with the equipment and funding our programs need to give the best possible patient care. We also expect the Our Hearts at Home Cardiovascular Campaign will be able to get back into full swing again so that we can add yet another full-service, closer-to-home program for our patients.
Happy New Year everyone. Here’s to good things to come.