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Stevenson’s “Revving up for Revitalization” with a raffle to raise funds

July 16, 2020   ·   0 Comments

Readers, start your engines. The Revving up for Revitalization Raffle is coming to Stevenson Memorial Hospital.

First place winner rides home in a 2019 Triumph Bobber Motorcycle courtesy of the Rizzardo Brothers (Previn Court Homes).

Second place receives a Traeger Tailgater from Alliston Home Hardware and two grilling boxes from Country Meats, while a gift basket from Beattie’s Distiller’s goes to third place. 

“All the money is going to a great cause and whether you are a motorcycle rider or it’s something that you’ve always wanted to do…it is a great prize and it’s valued at over $14,000,” said Melody McLean, Stevenson Foundation’s campaign manager.

“It’s just a fun way to be able to support the [revitalization] campaign with a chance to win some great prizes.”

There are no barriers to participating in the raffle; anyone with an internet connection can get involved as it’s solely taking place online at where tickets are $20.

Winners will be drawn from the raffle September 1 at 10:30 a.m. at Stevenson and their names will be shared online. 

The funds raised through the raffle directly support Stevenson’s redevelopment and revitalization campaign, which will renew outdated infrastructure in the hospital.

The local share of this campaign is $30 million, and while 52 per cent of it has been raised, McLean said there’s still a long way to go.

“It’s going to take a lot of support from our community and from our generous donors to make it happen, but right now we’re so lucky to be part of such a generous community and have their support,” she lauded.

“The hospital solely relies on the support of the community for enhancements to the infrastructure, equipment and technology – the government doesn’t provide any of that,” McLean added.

The Stevenson Foundation hopes to carry forward with that trend of generosity that’s coming from people in New Tecumseth and other municipalities who use the hospital.

McLean said all the donations are essential and every penny counts.

“The redevelopment of Stevenson is important because our community continues to grow and the hospital needs continue to grow with it,” she stressed. “The facility we’re in now has not undergone any redevelopment since it was built in 1964.”

When the Emergency Department (ER) was built over 55 years ago, it was designed for 7,000 visits a year, while it currently sees close to 40,000.

And that number of visits is expected to grow rapidly leading up to 2031, at which time the ER is projected to serve 75,000 to 100,000 annually.

McLean said this will put “increased pressure on the hospital” as they grapple with a lack of space, so the redevelopment project is much needed, not only right now but for future generations as well.

“A redeveloped hospital will provide a modern facility for our staff and our physicians, patients, volunteers and our community. It will also help us prepare for our future health care needs,” McLean said.

The revitalization campaign raises funds for hospital equipment in addition to updating infrastructure throughout the facility, as those costs aren’t covered by the Ministry of Health.

Meanwhile some renovations are already underway, the Level 2 ICU Project at Stevenson is currently being constructed.

Much of the hospital’s focus shifted in March when COVID-19 became a pandemic as it tried to prepare for an overloading of its healthcare system.

Fortunately, Canadians as a whole have been able to control COVID-19 by flattening the curve and, to date, there hasn’t been any serious surge capacity concerns locally.

However, it was a large undertaking preparing for the worst-case scenario at Stevenson. The hospital shifted their priorities from revitalization towards addressing immediate needs relating to COVID-19 as they surfaced.

Those needs included ensuring Stevenson had enough N95 masks and other forms of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to keep staff safe as shortages plagued Canada and the United States.

Things have cooled down as Canada now reports only 200-300 new cases per day, a stark decline from the 1,000–2,000 new cases that were being reported daily from early April into mid-May at the height of the pandemic.

In many ways, Canada has squashed COVID-19 but its risks are still present and the importance of keeping up with control measures has been stressed by public health units who recently imposed mandatory mask-wearing and face coverings in businesses.

Meanwhile, McLean said she encourages everyone to purchase a ticket to the Revving Up for Revitalization Raffle as it goes directly towards improving local health services.

Anyone interested in viewing the raffle prizes in person, such as the motorcycle or grill, can stop by Home Hardware in Alliston where they’re on display during store hours.

By Sam Odrowski
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

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