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Foundation Friday set to raise money for hospital foundation

It’s been 26 years, but support is as strong as ever for the Portage District General Hospital Foundation’s annual barbecue fundraiser.

Foundation Friday raised more than $10,000 last year, an all time record, and the foundation is pleased with the community support they’ve received.

“There’s some people who came to me last year and said they had never missed one barbecue and they’ve been there in the snow and the hail and the rain and the sunshine,” said Erin Miller, executive director of the hospital foundation. “They’re just great supporters of the hospital foundation.”

Last year was a great year, between serving approximately 1,000 people and having beautiful weather to enjoy.

“It’s a great opportunity for people to come down to their local hospital and see some of the work that the Portage hospital foundation does, look at some of the equipment that we’ve purchased in the past,” Miller said, adding sometimes the equipment is unavailable as it might need to be used, but in those cases they have pictures of the equipment.

“The hospital is a place that everybody in our community has to use for good things and bad things, and I think the community supports us because they know the services that we the foundation help to provide to the people that live here, some of the specialized equipment and some of the extraordinary stuff,” Miller said.

“People recognize that and they come and they support it, they have lunch. And it’s not just our Hospital Foundation barbecue it’s everything else that we do throughout the year and we’re just really grateful for that.”

The barbecue takes about 75 volunteers to put on, including the day of and leading up to the event, which helps the day run smoothly.

“Every department is busy helping collaboratively, we all just work really hard to make it a success. I think we’ve just over the years have thought of absolutely everything,” Miller said. “Even though we have that many people in attendance, it doesn’t take long to get through the lines if the weather’s unfavourable. We’re ready for rain, snow, sun, everything.”

Foundation Friday will be on May 29 at the Portage District General Hospital Garage on 5th Street SE from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. There will be a silent auction, a 50/50 draw and a barbecue lunch. The barbecue will feature burgers, smokies, salads, Tim Horton’s coffee and ice cream. Entertainment will be provided by local band Troupe. Tickets are $10 each and can be purchased the day of or call 204-239-2242 to purchase tickets in advance. Take out containers will be available.

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