Greater Victoria Firefighters Mark First Gift Towards Renewed $250,000 Commitment to the Victoria Hospitals Foundation in Support of Pediatric Care
Greater Victoria Firefighters gathered today at Victoria General Hospital (VGH) to present a cheque of $25,000 to the Victoria Hospitals Foundation. This gift marks the first towards a renewed ten-year $250,000 commitment from the Professional Firefighters of Greater Victoria Community Foundation, focused on helping to fund priority equipment for the Pediatric and Neonatal Units at VGH.
“We are so grateful for the commitment of the Professional Firefighters of Greater Victoria Community Foundation. This display of philanthropy is not only a testament to their generosity, but also to their compassion and devotion to the youngest members of our community who rely on this very hospital to get well and go home to their families,” said Avery Brohman, CEO of the Victoria Hospitals Foundation. “Here at VGH, 80% of equipment in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) and 60% of equipment in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is funded by donors like the Professional Firefighters. Their ongoing dedication to ensure life-saving equipment is available for local children is truly inspiring.”
Firefighters from Saanich, Oak Bay, Victoria, and Esquimalt made an entrance at VGH, driving their firetrucks by the Pediatric Unit to spread cheer to patients. Those well enough to come down presented a handmade gift to the firefighters and explored the firetrucks.
“Nothing is more rewarding than being here to meet with the care teams and children who directly benefit from our fundraising efforts. It is a true reminder of how lucky we are to have excellent healthcare close to home, and why these donations are so important,” said Taylor Britton of the Saanich Firefighters Charitable Foundation. “This pledge would not be possible without the members of our communities. Your continued support through local fundraising events and initiatives directly contributes to the everyday care of the children who need it most.”
Since 2011, the Professional Firefighters of Greater Victoria Community Foundation has donated $275,000 towards life-saving equipment, including a pediatric cardiac ultrasound system, a pediatric ventilator, and patient monitors. This year’s commitment will help fund a Portable Cardiac Ultrasound in support of the Victoria Hospitals Foundation’s Emerge Stronger campaign. This equipment is used to diagnose and monitor congenital heart defects, which occurs in 1 out of every 100 babies born.
“Thanks to our specialized care teams, and donors like the Professional Firefighters of Greater Victoria, 98% of pediatric cases on Vancouver Island can be treated locally here at VGH,” said Emma Carrick, Manager of Pediatrics and PICU, Island Health. “Through your generosity this year, the Portable Cardiac Ultrasound will help speed up the diagnosis and monitoring of children and babies with defects and other heart conditions, leading to potentially life-saving treatment.”
VGH is the referral centre for maternity and pediatrics on Vancouver Island, and accepts transfers from within the province. Host to one of BC’s four high-level NICUs for critically ill newborns, and one of its two PICUs for critically ill children aged 0-17, the teams care for young patients who may require life support, special medications, and one-to-one observation.
Community members can support the Greater Victoria Firefighters and the Victoria Hospitals Foundation by purchasing a 2023 Between the Calls Firefighter calendar this coming fall. The calendar is a joint initiative project among the four Greater Victoria professional fire departments to raise money for southern Island pediatric units through the Victoria Hospitals Foundation
Contributions to the Emerge Stronger campaign can be made by donating online at victoriahf.ca/stronger, mailing a cheque, through gifts of securities,
or calling 250-519-1750.