Spirit of Giving


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10 reasons we love our donors

Happy Valentine’s Day! Donors are an essential part of making the IWK the centre of excellence that it is today. We are so thankful for their love and generosity! This Valentine’s Day, our staff members at the IWK Foundation wanted to let our supporters know exactly why we love them. 

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10 reasons why we love our donors.

1 - I love the passion so many of our donors have for the IWK. They are fiercely dedicated to the cause and they understand the direct impact their giving has on patients and staff.  It’s a beautiful thing! ~ Carla Adams, Principal Communications Strategist

2 - Our donors provide more than money – they give passion, energy, and expertise! ~ Molly Cotter, Director of Finances and Donor Services

3 - They  not only give, they can go above and beyond, volunteering their time and efforts beyond the financial. They’re so happy to give to total strangers! It really is inspiring. ~ Christie Moore, Major Gifts Officer

4 - I love our donors because they help the staff at the IWK make miracles happen! - Lynda Moffatt,  Development Officer – Cape Breton and Eastern Nova Scotia 

5 - I am very grateful and love our many donor’s who, because they care, are quietly having an impact on the quality of health care we have come to expect from the IWK; they help to ensure that this level of excellence can continue well into the future. Their continued support is both humbling and vital. ~ Mary Theresa Ross, Manger of Planned Giving 

6 - They inspire me to be more giving.  ~ Trena Crewe, Director of Donor Relations

7 - I love our donors because they give children hope. ~ David Huett, Donor Service Specialist

8 - I love our donors because they care about the IWK as much as we do. Their donations are special and come from the heart. We both share the same the goal, to make the IWK the place possible for Maritime children, women and their families. ~ Andrew Paris, Administrative Assistant/Receptionist 

9 - I love our donors for their spirit of generosity and support for Maritime families.  ~ Natalie Foster, Database & Donor Services Administrator

10 - I love our donors because beyond the financial support they provide, they provide the most important gift of all:  hope. ~ Geoffrey Milder, Development Officer, Mainland NS & Children’s Miracle Network Program Director


From the bottom of our hearts, thank you to every one of our supporters. You are part of everything we do. 

Make a gift to the IWK Foundation.


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Making a change in the world

Shanyn, Maddy, Jessica, and Luna

Shanyn, Maddy, Jessica, and Luna

At the beginning of the school year we got our class outline. On it, our expectations and our teacher’s goal for this semester was for us to do something to change something in the world, whether it was big or small.  A couple of us got together and figured out a great cause we wanted to help.  I loved the idea of the IWK, it was so important in our community and they saved two of our group member’s lives.  Neither of us would have been here if it weren’t for their help!  We had a goal of $500 to raise for them.  We wanted to make sure that the IWK would always be there to help children like us.  In our school, in the community of Liverpool, on October 24th, we had a bake sale. Altogether we raised $125 for that day and scheduled a bottle drive for the 2nd and 3rd of November.  In the freezing cold we managed to raise $380 which was just enough to reach our goal.  We were so glad to be able to give them $505 towards the kids that needed our help.  We drove into the IWK one day and did the cheque presentation.  The girl that assisted us from the start was very helpful, and I am glad that we chose this charity.

We had a great journey with the IWK and loved every step of the way.

Shanyn, Maddy, Jessica, and Luna


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Introducing Kendra and Kinsey!

Hi, I’m Kendra!  Hi, I’m Kinsey!

We’re really excited to be the IWK Superstar Club ambassadors.  We’ve spent a lot of time at the IWK.

Kendra and Kinsey Fader

Kendra and Kinsey Fader

We were born three months early and couldn’t even breathe on our own.  Our mom told us about how the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) doctors and nurses at the IWK worked hard, for almost five months, to get us healthy enough to go home.  After that, we still had lots of doctor’s appointments, lots of surgeries and lots of hospital stays.  Kendra even had to be tube fed 18 hours every day, by a feeding pump she wore in a lady bug backpack, until she was almost four years old!

Today, we’re five years old – almost six!  We just started Grade 1.  We still have lots of regular doctor’s appointments at the IWK, but that’s ok, we don’t mind going there.  We have so many friends there.  Everybody is so nice and they are always happy to see us and tell us how much we’re growing.

Since the IWK has done so much for us and other kids, we like to help them out.  We have been happy to share our story, do our own fundraising, make paintings for donors and even give our own thank you speech to some people that donated money.

By being ongoing monthly donors, our family is also a proud part of the IWK Superstar Club too.  Our mom and dad have told us that by donating money every month and sharing our story, we are helping babies, kids and families who are at the IWK now, get better faster.  The money we give every month helps the hospital buy newer equipment, like ventilators and feeding pumps that are better than the ones we had.  This is our way of helping to make the IWK even better for kids and families in the future.

Will you help us help the IWK by joining the Superstar Club?  We promise you won’t regret it!

Love,
Kendra and Kinsey

Learn more about the IWK Foundation.


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Made-to-Order Independence

This article was written by Debra Wells-Hopey for the Spring/Summer issue of Izaak Magazine – an in-depth, behind the scenes, all-access publication highlighting the incredible, everyday happenings at the IWK Health Centre.

11-year-old Taya and occupational therapist Julia Gates

11-year-old Taya and occupational therapist Julia Gates

How a customized wheelchair program provides quality of life for hundreds of kids.

Taya is spirited, bright and patient as she describes the way she gets around in the world.

“When I move my head left, I turn left,” she says enthusiastically, even though she must have explained this to people many times over. “When I move my head right, I go right. And when I move my head back, I go straight forward.”

At 11 years-old, Taya has Cerebral Palsy and is a long time visitor to IWK Specialty Seating, a service within the IWK’s Rehabilitation Service. The service offers assessment and provision of customized seating and positioning equipment, including seating inserts, wheelchairs, special-needs strollers, bath seats, car seats and toileting aids.

Julia Gates, Occupational Therapist in Specialty Seating, and Nancy Cashen, Operations Manager for Rehabilitation Services, have known Taya since she was three years old. “This program is designed to assist children who can’t walk on their own, most often due to Spina Bifida, Muscular Dystrophy or Cerebral Palsy,” explained Gates. “Children are referred to the program as early as 14 months and stay with us until they are ready to transition to adult health care.”

Gates explained that although children this young are able to still use a stroller, it means they are dependent on others to get around — at an age when they want to start exploring the world on their own.

“Independence is an essential part in a child’s growth and development,” added Cashen.

Specialty Seating at the IWK consists of Cashen and Gates, as well as a Specialty Seating Technician, David Beattie, and a Funding Coordinator. Together, along with the family, this team determines what kind of wheelchair would be best for the child.

“We take many factors into account,” says Gates. “For instance, a level of hand mobility is essential for maneuvering a manual wheelchair, but not necessary for a power wheelchair.”

The amount of seating support required is a complex assessment that is completed by the occupational therapist and takes into account the disease prognosis, planned orthopaedic surgeries, maintenance of skin integrity, comfort, functional abilities and wheelchair skills. All children are different, and the amount of support required could be viewed as mild, moderate, or complex. Generally, seating for a mild support is not custom made, and may be arranged through a local wheelchair supplier in the community. The seating for children who require moderate or complex support is custom made by the Specialty Seating Service at the IWK.

There is a workshop onsite at the IWK where Beattie employs his expertise. For specialized seating, an impression is made on a mould that resembles a large bean bag. This shape can then be transferred to a 3D digital model on the computer. These images are sent via email to the United States where the only machine of its kind in North America manufactures the seat. It is then shipped to the IWK for fitting.

As for Beattie, he has been with the hospital since 1989. He was familiar with an Occupational Therapist who suggested he may enjoy the work. Considering Beattie has remained in the program for more than 24 years, it certainly is a great fit.

“This is the perfect job as far as I’m concerned,” says Beattie. “I get to work with my hands and help people simultaneously. The work is challenging and rewarding.”

Beattie’s workshop looks much like any other, yet very unlike anything you expect to see in a hospital. There are various materials stored: pieces of repurposed wheelchairs, three industrial-sized sewing machines, neoprene for upholstering, two band saws, a table saw and a wealth of tools.

“When we first see someone we measure them for a seat using a fitting frame. From these measurements I construct a seat out of foam and plywood and I upholster it. I also adjust and repair wheelchairs as needed. I’d say one of my favourite parts of my job is going on the mobile clinics. Several times a year we go to Cape Breton and the Annapolis Valley. At times we go to schools here in HRM, or even homes.”

Gates explained that the first order of business when a child needs a wheelchair or seating device is to meet with the family and get to know their needs.

“This initial meeting is so important,” says Gates. “It’s when we first get to meet the child; establishing their needs, administering a postural assessment, taking measurements, then making recommendations.”

“Recently we had a child who needed a new power wheelchair. We had two styles and tried them both in the home to see which operated better in that specific environment. It needs to work in the child’s daily life.”

Having the right wheelchair and seating can make all the difference in the world when it comes to quality of life — kids need to participate with classmates, explore their environment and have a sense of independence.

“When a child receives their first wheelchair it is often a period of growth for both the parents and the child,” says Gates.

Taya’s mother Christine knows all about it. She has been taking Taya to Specialty Seating and working with the team for eight years. Taya was only three when she received her first wheelchair and met the group at Specialty Seating. She was outgrowing a stroller at this point, not only in a physical way but also as a growing child her needs were changing — she had a desire to be independent, to be able to explore the world on her own.

“Although she was small enough to still use the stroller, it no longer seemed to be the appropriate choice,”explained her mom. “The chair was so much better for her

Izaak#Provincial#05-02-2013#A01posture, and allowed her to be eye level with her peers. Her diaphragm was also better supported which made her breathing and therefore her speaking so much better.”

Taya was born with cerebral palsy. She enjoys her grade five class and likes to read — especially Harry Potter books. She also swims and uses a sit ski at Wentworth ski hill.

“I have both a manual and a power chair,” explained Taya. “I use the power chair at school. Some places are easier to use a wheelchair in than others though.”

Although Taya drives herself around by using head movements, the wheelchair must be steered remotely by a device similar to a joystick when it is being loaded into the family van. Apparently, according to a laughing Taya, dad is an expert at it, while mom, who is quick to agree, isn’t as deft.

Taya was eight when she got her first power chair. She started at six years old “training” with a joy stick, but it was a lot of work and a head array began to make more sense. The family visits Specialty Seating about once a year.

“To a certain extent, the chairs grow with her. Especially the manual chair, which she will have for about eight years,” explains Christine. “The power chair needs changes or replacing more frequently.”

As for cost, the family is fortunate that both Christine and her husband have good health care plans, however, they still certainly incur costs. The head array alone cost $10,000, which is as much as the chair. Then there are the costs of converting the family van with a manual ramp that has to be lifted and unfolded. A power system is even more expensive. This is the reality for families with a wheelchair. Taya gets to continue to visit the team at Specialty Seating until she is ready to transition to adult health care.

“I can’t say enough about the program and the staff,” says Christine. “When your child is first diagnosed, you’re in a daze. You don’t know where to go or what to do. They have helped us immensely, even in emergency situations.”

One such situation was during a weekend when Taya’s chair was accidentally run over, crushing one of the wheels. It meant facing a whole weekend propped up or in bed. Not a great thought for a young, energetic girl like Taya. Christine contacted Gates and Beattie who were more than willing to go into work on a Saturday to get the chair fixed. Says Taya, “Dave and Julia are extremely nice people and I would come to them all my life if I could.”

And there’s no higher praise than that.

To read the full issue of Izaak magazine visit www.iwkfoundation.org/izaak

Make a gift to the IWK Health Centre Foundation.


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These Hands.

June 1st and 2nd was one for the record books! Spirits were soaring as once again, generous Maritimers stepped up for the IWK and declared it as a special place and an absolute priority for families. Thanks to the incredible generosity of our donors, we were able to raise $5,877,139.53 during our 29th Annual IWK Telethon for Children on CTV!

To add to the merriment, on Saturday evening we debuted “These Hands” – a very special video created in collaboration with Canadian Folk/Celtic singer-songwriter, Dave Gunning.  Direced by Scott Simpson of Playmaker Films, this video showcases the incredible strength and community inside the IWK Health Centre.

We are proud to announce that “These Hands”, co-written by Gunning and George Canyon, is the East Coast Music Awards 2013 Song of the Year! The song accompanies a children’s book by the same name, which teaches us that every person has the ability to be a hero of the human kind.  A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the book supports the IWK Health Centre Foundation.

Thank you Dave Gunning for your incredible support and commitment to improving the lives of Maritime families who rely on the care of the IWK.

“I was excited to be involved with this project because of the great work that’s done by both the staff at the hospital and the Foundation,” says Gunning. “I’m very proud to have the song being used for such a great purpose.” 

Hope you enjoy the video, please feel free to share it!


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to the IWK Health Centre Foundation.


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Generosity Rocks!

Thank You Bedford Masonic Lodge 104 and the Masonic Foundation of Nova Scotia!

This past weekend was a busy one for the IWK and the IWK Foundation, but only one event brought the crowd to their (dancing) feet. The Bedford Masonic Lodge 104 held Free Bird, a rockin’ benefit concert in support of Mental Health Awareness, at the Lower Deck Bar & Grill on May 26. This event benefited several mental health organizations, including the IWK Health Centre.

The incredible generosity of the Masonic Lodge did not stop there; the Masonic Foundation of Nova Scotia recently announced they will be donating $10,000 to mental health care at the IWK! Their donation will go a very long way to changing lives through excellence in care.

Events like Free Bird not only raise much-needed funds, they also bring our community together to create an open dialogue on mental health. This is a conversation that must keep going! One of the Health Centre’s goals is to remove the stigma that exists around mental illness, and the more we all talk about it and share our experiences, the faster we will move toward positive change.

The crowd at Free Bird was treated to concerts by local bands who played everything  from rock to swing-influenced tunes. Bands included: Loose Ends, Swingology, Remedy, Memphis Nights, and The Take It Easy Band. A silent auction and 50/50 draws rounded out the event perfectly.

We are so grateful to the Bedford Masonic Lodge 104 and the Masonic Foundation of Nova Scotia for their generosity and for including us as a beneficiary of this unique event – and to the community as a whole for attending and supporting this very important cause.  Your contribution will surely change lives; together, we really can make a difference.

Swingology

Swingology had people up and dancing the night away!

Loose Ends at Free Bird

Loose Ends rocking the stage!


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If only we could have said thank you

May is Leave a Legacy Month. Each of us possesses the power to provide a lasting legacy to charitable causes we feel are important.

A life well lived; a legacy that will last forever. St. Clair Nowe of Broad Cove, NS, may not have been famous in the conventional sense, but he will be remembered forever for his generous gift to future generations. Recently, St. Clair left an estate gift to the IWK Health Centre Foundation which will serve Maritime families for years to come.

StClair Nowe

StClair Nowe

Born in Bridgewater on August 31, 1944, St. Clair graduated from Hebbville High School and Bridgewater Commercial School.  He then spent many years working for the Provincial Government in Halifax.  After returning to Broad Cove, St. Clair lived in his family home for many years where he enjoyed listening to music, cruising in his beloved automobile, and working in the community.  St. Clair Nowe passed away peacefully in July of 2011.

The IWK Foundation team was humbled and honoured when we learned that St. Clair had left an estate gift to the IWK in his will.   His donation will have an incredible impact on patient care, and serves as a fitting tribute to a man whose memory and legacy are held in such high regard.

If only we could have said thank you; he would know how many patients will benefit from his gift.

Through his estate donation, St. Clair has contributed to the continued excellence in specialized care for Maritime women and children.  We are eternally grateful for his generosity, as estate gifts are instrumental in helping the IWK enhance its world-class research in fields such as neonatal and pediatric intensive care, women’s health, and mental health services for children and youth.  Funds also support the purchase of modern technology and equipment.

St. Clair clearly believed in supporting his community, and knew he could make a difference.  We encourage everyone who is thinking about making a planned gift to let us know so that we can celebrate and say thank you for helping us nurture the future of health care.

We all have the ability to make a difference in our community. If we work together, we can help ensure the patients and families who rely on the IWK reach their full potential.   An estate gift is the most important gift you will ever give, and the donation provided by St. Clair Nowe is a shining example of how a planned gift given today ensures a stronger future tomorrow.

The IWK Health Centre Foundation is a proud supporter of the Nova Scotia Leave a Legacy(TM) program.

For more information on how to make a planned gift to the IWK Foundation, please visit www.iwkfoundation.org/plannedgiving.


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We count our blessings every day.

Lindsay Reynolds is a Member Service Counselor at CAA Atlantic in Saint John, New Brunswick and mother to five year old Seth, an IWK patient.

The IWK is holds a very special place in my heart. Without them, my life just wouldn’t be the same. At only 27 weeks, I gave birth to my son, Seth, at the Saint John Regional Hospital here at home. He was so tiny! Soon after being born, we experienced a setback as his weight plummeted to just 1 lb 1oz.  But as each day passed, my little man grew stronger, and at 22 days old, we were finally able to hold him for the very first time. Words cannot express that moment.

Baby Seth

Baby Seth

Seth soon began experiencing complications once again, and at 36 days old he was diagnosed with Necrotizing Enterocolitis, a potentially fatal inflammatory bowel disease that 10 per cent of premature infants develop, as well as a blood infection. I will never forget the moment that we were told that we were being transported to the IWK in Halifax. Up until then, I always viewed the IWK as a world class facility, however something I would never have a need for.  Five days later, after consultation with the IWK general surgery team, we were boarding the Nova Scotia life flight helicopter and were on our way to the IWK.

Seth fought like a trooper during his 89 day stay in the IWK NICU 2-critical care unit as he faced a number of issues such as,  Necrotizing enterocolitis , infections, apnea of prematurity, bronchopulmonary dysplasia, pneumonia, various blood disorders, serriatia colonization, inguinal hernias, hypospadius, small bowel resection and an Ileostomy.

Although this was an incredibly challenging time for my family, we always felt at ease knowing that our son was being cared for by the best doctors in the Maritimes.

One day, on a bright and sunny afternoon in the IWK gardens, I was able to take my son outdoors for the very first time – he was 125 days old. Soon after, we were able to take him home. Since then, we have returned to the IWK for a Hernia repair and an ileostomy reversal and check up.

Seth, age 4.

Seth, age 4.

We count our blessings every day.  Life would be very different if it were not for care and knowledge of the IWK staff and the special facilities and equipment they use. This is why I am so proud to be a part of an organization that understands the importance of supporting pediatric health. From April 15 – May 26, 2013 CAA Atlantic offices will be raffling a trip for two to Italy, with proceeds going to the IWK Foundation and the Janeway Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador. Funds raised through this raffle will be used to support the most urgent care needs of the hospitals. I worked at CAA and participated in our fundraising initiatives for the IWK each year for five years before my donations and efforts took on a whole new meaning.

If it were not for the IWK team, facilities and equipment, the very best part of my life would not be alive today!

Make a gift to the IWK Foundation.


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Laps for Loonies

Adam Ramsay is an on-air personality for 95.1  FM CFCY, and will be participating along with Q93 personalities in the Laps for Loonies event on April 12 from 9 a.m. – 9 p.m. at Charlottetown Mall.

Adam Ramsay, 95.1 FM CFCY Radio personality

Adam Ramsay, 95.1 FM CFCY Radio personality

There are so many incredible charitable organizations and wonderful causes in our communities to support today that it’s easy to find disappointment within yourself for not being able to champion them all. But maybe the silver lining comes from the thought that perhaps the groups you do choose to support, and dedicate your time, energy and resources to, are chosen because they best reflect who you are and where you feel the closest connection to through the moments  you’ve experienced.

For me, the IWK Foundation (and the Children’s Hospital it represents) is one of those causes that hits home and inspires me to do what I can to support all those who touch the organization.  Many years ago, my sister was born at the IWK, more than three months premature.  And as I grow more into adulthood I’m seeing friends, co-workers, and more members of my community rely on the services and the special care of the IWK.  It’s hard not to feel close to an organization that has been such an integral part in the lives of the important people around us.

Through the Laps For Loonies fundraising event that we have developed in Charlottetown, I’m hoping to be a part of a day that will look to raise thousands for a cause that is so important to pursue. Through a simple act of walking ‘laps’ inside the largest shopping centre on the Island, we’re hoping to be a part of something much bigger – something that will help families who are not yet even aware they will need the assistance of the IWK, be taken care of when their time of need arrives.

And for me, that’s a cause more than worthy of championing.

Thank you Adam for you support! Don’t forget to tune in to 95.1 FM CFCY on April 25 & 26 as we broadcast live from Charlottetown Mall for the IWK Radiothon – Proudly presented by Investor’s Group. 

Make a gift to the IWK Foundation. 


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I am so thankful for the generous people in our life

We are often asked about the different ways that individuals can support the IWK Foundation. Tribute giving offers a unique way to mark a special occasion and honour someone who has touched your life.

Tribute gifts are a great way of giving back.

Bella Mae celebrating her 1st birthday.

Jessica and Steve Reeves of Freetown, Prince Edward Island, were looking for a special way to celebrate their daughter’s first birthday.

“The IWK has played such a big role in our lives. Our daughter, Bella Mae, was born at the IWK 10 weeks early – weighing only 2lbs 5 ounces. Setting up a tribute gift was a really easy way to give back to a place that holds such a special place in our heart.”

Instead of birthday gifts, they set up a donation jar where friends and family could make a gift to the IWK, if they wished.

“I am so thankful for the generous people in our life. I’m excited to say that we were able to raise about $300 for the IWK!”

Thank you Jessica and Steve for your support, and Happy Belated Birthday Bella Mae!

Learn more about Tribute gifts for the IWK Foundation. 

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