A non-profit raising funds to improve the quality and availability of healthcare in the southwest held their annual general meeting in April. 

The Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation announced a total of $596,360 raised from events in 2022. 

Helen Arnold, board chair of the foundation, said the year was filled with exciting things.  

“We're very proud of the success the Foundation has experienced,” she said. “And we have you, the donors, to thank for that. Once again, you have proven how healthcare needs in our region are your top priority.” 

One annual event was renamed last year to honour a beloved late fire chief of the Swift Current Fire Department, who dedicated his life to protecting and serving the community.  

The Darren McClelland Golf Classic took place on June 3 and was such a resounding success that both Chinook Golf Course and Elmwood Golf Course were in use. Roughly $60,000 was raised over the course of the day, with funds going to both the foundation and the Swift Current Fire Department.  

Elmwood also hosted the Foundation’s biggest annual fundraiser, the Pharmasave Radiothon for Healthcare, in the fall.  

Folks took to the airwaves on October 27 and 28 to raise money for a blood analyzer and PICC Line ultrasound technology to be brought to the Cypress Regional Hospital. Swift Current racked up a total of $205,150.  

Pioneer Co-op became the Foundation’s newest partner, as they were given naming rights for the Rotary House. Along with the rebranding, some updates have been made and Arnold said they’ve since noticed an uptick in reservations. 

The VP Investment Counsel DNIF Gift Shop reopened at the Cypress Hills Regional Hospital, now offering a Bella Brave clothing line, handmade items and snacks, and even iPad rentals for patients.  

Some ongoing regional projects include a sensory room in Shaunavon after raising $125,000, and a digital X-ray machine in Cabri that garnered $250,000 over two years.  

"Fundraising is always a challenge," Arnold said. “You have to come up with new and innovative ways. We have some of our regular events that are tried and true that the donors respond well to, so we will continue with those, but our staff is always brainstorming ideas. 

“We are focusing on also making more of an effort to reach out to [rural] communities and try and help them with their smaller-scale fundraising as well, and make sure that some of our focus remains with the outlying communities and not just totally centered in Swift Current. Most of our fundraising events happen in Swift Current, and we'd like to do some of them in those rural communities as well.”