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Penticton's Tree of Dreams fundraiser goes above and beyond

The South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation's year end fundraiser is exceeding expectations with two days to go.
Image Credit: South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation, with permission
December 30, 2014 - 8:28 AM

PENTICTON - As the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation's ninth annual Tree of Dreams campaign winds down executive director Janice Perrino is hopeful the fundraiser will continue to exceed its goal.

“We were concerned that this year’s Tree of Dreams campaign would not be as successful as in past years,” Perrino said, noting this year’s effort for new beds wasn’t as item specific as other years, when fundraising went to a single piece of equipment. She was concerned beds might not be something people could identify with as easily.

“The beds at Penticton Regional Hospital are usually the first contact point for patients,” Perrino said, who described the hospital’s present beds as low tech and showing signs of wear. "We had hoped to raise $250,000 to purchase 20 beds at $12,000 apiece, but so far we’ve raised $312,000, so we will be able to purchase 26.”

There will be sufficient beds to replace all the units in the surgical ward. In total, there are 147 beds at the hospital.

“It’s been a real surprise, such a blessing,” Perrino said of the campaign’s success. With a couple more days to go in 2014, Perrino is hoping further donations will allow them  to purchase two or three more.

“It’s always a challenge to inform the public - the hospital has so many needs.”

Perrino said the foundation has tackled a couple of big programs, including fundraising for the hospital expansion. She said 2015 will be a big year as the foundation begins fundraising $20-million needed to equip the new hospital care tower. That campaign will begin in earnest in the spring of 2015.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad at or call 250-488-3065. To contact the editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014
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Tags: fundraiser

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