Fundrais­ing auc­tion huge suc­cess

Trin­ity Con­cep­tion Pla­cen­tia Health Foun­da­tion raise some $100,000 for med­i­cal projects

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE - BYMELISSA JENK­INS

The Trin­ity Con­cep­tion Pla­cen­tia Health Foun­da­tion con­tin­ued its suc­cess­ful run of fundrais­ing events with the 22nd an­nual din­ner and auc­tion, which took place at the Har­bour Breeze in Har­bour Grace June 8.

The foun­da­tion’s ef­forts boasted a to­tal of some $100,000 to aid with the pur­chase of new equip­ment for the GI unit and new pe­di­atric equip­ment for Car­bon­ear hos­pi­tal, said Don Coombs, the foun­da­tion’s chief de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer.

Dr. Gary Baker, a pathol­ogy spe­cial­ist em­ployed with Eastern Health, has been a sup­porter of the foun­da­tion since 1989, and was named this year’s event pa­tron.

Coombs said 253 peo­ple at­tended at $75 a ticket, but it was the dona-

tions that re­ally made a dif­fer­ence.

Do­na­tions

The event be­gan with a som­bre feel­ing as a ded­i­ca­tion to the late Alice (French) Dawe, an avid sup­porter of the event, was made.

“Alice and her friends used the auc­tion as kind of a re­union each year,” Helen Clarke, chair of the foun­da­tion, told The Com­pass.

Clarke said for years 76-year-old Dawe and her friends, in­clud­ing pho­tog­ra­pher Lorne Ros­toski and artist Christopher Pratt, would at­tend the event and sit at a ta­ble to­gether to share sto­ries of the past year.

She added Dawe had died sud­denly of heart-re­lated com­pli­ca­tions only one week af­ter last year’s fes­tiv­i­ties.

Roger Pike of the Pike Group of Com­pa­nies hon­oured Dawe dur­ing the auc­tion. He spoke kindly of her to the sold-out crowd, and com­pleted his speech with a $10,000 do­na­tion in her mem­ory to the foun­da­tion, said Clarke.

Pratt also made a do­na­tion in mem­ory of his friend.

“Chris took a piece of art­work off his own wall from his own col­lec­tion and do­nated it in (Dawe’s) mem­ory,” Clarke said. “It was val­ued at $10,000.”

Piece of cake

Christa Fowler, wife of Car­bon­ear Gen­eral Hos­pi­tal doc­tor Robert Fowler, or­ga­nized a new fundrais­ing event this year, a cake auc­tion. If some­one placed a “solid bid” on one of six spe­cialty cakes on dis­play, they would win a cake, said Clarke. The top six bids would then choose their cake in de­scend­ing or­der of their bid.

Clarke was ex­pect­ing bids of $50 for each cake, but the gen­eros­ity proved lu­cra­tive when the first cake was pur­chased at a price of $501, with the sec­ond com­ing close be­hind at $467.

“Groups of peo­ple were get­ting to­gether to pur­chase a cake for their ta­ble,” Clarke ex­plained. “We were blown away by the sup­port.”

Many dif­fer­ent items

The event was a huge suc­cess for the foun­da­tion, but the item do­na­tions from spon­sors left at­ten­dees with smiles on their faces as well. Coombs said they re­ceived some 400 do­na­tions to auc­tion for the event and most of them were lux­ury items.

Some of the do­na­tions in­cluded seal skin coats and purses, trips, booths at Mile One Sta­dium for hockey games and a five-night and four-day fish­ing trip to Labrador.

“Some artists do­nated art­work as well,” Coombs said. “It is a good way for them to get some ex­po­sure.”

All items were auc­tioned off in both a silent and live auc­tion.

The live seg­ment was con­ducted by Blair Love­less of Fitz­patrick’s Auc­tion­eer­ing.

“As much as the gen­eros­ity of our donors was im­por­tant, we could never have done it with­out our vol­un­teers,” noted Coombs.

Coombs said ex­ec­u­tive chef Gary Gosse, owner of the Har­bour Breeze, was a huge sup­porter of the auc­tion. Gosse do­nated the space for the event as well as pro­vided and pre­pared the food.

Chefs Abby Noel and Chris Par­sons also vol­un­teered their time and tal­ents to pre­pare meals for the foun­da­tion.

Ra­dio per­son­al­ity and co-owner of Coast 101.1 in St. John’s, Andy New­man, hosted the event again this year. New­man said it is his 23rd year vol­un­teer­ing with Trin­ity Con­cep­tion Pla­cen­tia Health Foun­da­tion and he has been in­volved with the auc­tion for over a decade.

Anne Whe­lan and the Car­bon­ear Col­le­giate choir and Spirit of New­found­land Pro­duc­tions per­formed for the crowd as well.

One of the most im­por­tant jobs of the night came at the con­clu­sion of the event.

“We had a shut­tle and des­ig­nated driv­ers bring peo­ple home,” Clarke said. “We did not want any­one drink­ing and driv­ing.”

Foun­da­tion work­ing hard

The pre­vi­ous fundraiser, the an­nual telethon, was a huge suc­cess as well. The money raised dur­ing the Oc­to­ber event is cur­rently be­ing spent on a wait­ing area for dial­y­sis pa­tients and a sec­ond in­te­grated op­er­at­ing room.

Some of the equip­ment up­grades are nec­es­sary since the hos­pi­tal is us­ing what Clarke re­ferred to as “ar­chaic equip­ment.”

She said things like loungers in pal­lia­tive care rooms and chairs in wait­ing ar­eas can also make all the dif­fer­ence for pa­tients and their fam­ily, es­pe­cially dur­ing times of need.

“Sim­ple things can be just as im­por­tant as big, shiny equip­ment,” she stated.

The Trin­ity Con­cep­tion Pla­cen­tia Health Foun­da­tion will hold its next event — a golf tour­na­ment — July 5.

To par­tic­i­pate or share fundrais­ing ideas visit http://www.tcphealth­foun­da­tion.ca.

Sub­mit­ted photo

The Trin­ity Con­cep­tion Pla­cen­tia Health Foun­da­tion hon­oured Alice (French) Dawe, an avid sup­porter of the foun­da­tion, at the 22nd an­nual auc­tion June 8. Two large do­na­tions worth $10,000 each were do­nated in her mem­ory.

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