Efforts to improve the experience of expectant and new mothers and victims of trauma treated at the Stettler Hospital and Care Centre have just received a shot in the arm after Farm Credit Canada (FCC) donated $10,000 to the Stettler Health Services Foundation.
The money will be used either to upgrade delivery services or the hospital’s trauma room, which are the current targets of the foundation’s many fundraising drives, including the Festival of Lights, An Affair for the Heart, fundraising runs and golf tournaments.
Leona Thorogood, chair of the foundation, said she was elated the foundation was chosen as one of the 76 recipient organizations.
“We applied in March or April when the application window opened,” she explained. “I told them about the foundation, our health centre and how we help the local rural families stay here for health care.”
The foundation has known about the grant for about two weeks, but was asked to keep quiet until FCC made the official announcement. The board, which meets mid-September, will choose the equipment on which to spend the money.
While the decision has yet to be made, Thorogood said her heart is set on a special type of stretcher which can double as an xray table. This allows victims of trauma to remain on their stretcher for xrays, rather than having to be moved from the stretcher to the xray table and back again. This cuts down on the patient’s pain and suffering as well as limits further damage.
“We have to spend the money within a certain time frame, so we want something immediate but which wouldn’t be obsolete when we finish our upgrades,” Thorogood explained. “The stretcher certainly fits the bill.”
FCC made the announcement about its $1 million in donations from its AgriSpirit Fund on Monday, Aug. 29. The money is being spread out amongst 78 Canadian communities and community groups, including Stettler. The purpose of the fund is to support rural capital projects, a press release from FCC explained.
“At FCC, we are passionate about giving back to the communities where our customers and employees live and work,” Sophie Perrault, FCC executive vice-president and COO, said. “The FCC AgriSpirit Fund is another opportunity for us to partner with organizations that are doing great things in their communities.”
More than a thousand applications were received this year for the grant money, which can be anywhere from $5,000 to $25,000, for use in community improvement projects like hospitals and care centres, childcare facilities, fire and rescue equipment, playgrounds, food banks, libraries and more.
In the past 13 years, since FCC started the fund, more than 1,000 recipients have been given a financial boost to the tune of $10.5 million.