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Telethon exceeds lofty expectations

Posted on October 30, 2013 by Taber Times

On this past snow covered Sunday, Taber was generous once again, as the Taber and District Health Foundation held its 19th Annual “Share in the Experience of Giving” Telethon at the Taber Heritage Inn and the event was broadcast live on Shaw Cable 9.

The telethon is held each year to raise funds for the Taber Hospital to operate and for the Taber Hospital to offer the latest and greatest technology to those who need it most. This year’s telethon helped raise over $250,000.

“If you discount the snow storm — it went very, very well,” joked Dave McKee, fundraising co-ordinator of the Taber and District Health Foundation.

“It went over extremely well and the entertainment was superb,” added McKee. Entertainers from Taber, Vauxhall, Hays, Enchant, Barnwell and throughout southern Alberta were featured at the event with Trevor Panczak and Breanne Urban headlining the show.

The wide-variety of entertainment included vocalists, guitarists and a saxophone quartet, with the afternoon and evening hosted by “Wild” Bill Lawson and Peter Seadon.

McKee noted the funds raised were unexpected and the foundation had no idea how much in funds would be raised during this year’s televised talent variety show.

“The only way to describe that total is in a three-letter word — a word called ‘wow.’ We had no idea that kind of money was coming in. No idea whatsoever. It’s humbling and it’s greatly appreciated,” said McKee, the amount in funds raised will go in front of the board of directors of the foundation and the board will start motioning to purchase equipment.

“We should start seeing some of that equipment rolling in — some within 30 days and some within 90 days. It depends on where it’s coming from and who you’re dealing with,” said McKee.

McKee will now spend his days preparing and planning for the Kiwanis golf tournament in June and also the 2014 “Share in the Experience of Giving” telethon.

“For the next 30 days we will be trying to get all the pledges in and receipts done and everything finished up by probably the end of November, if everything goes well.”

The total donations received since the Taber and District Health Foundation began in May 1992 exceed $3.6 million.

Over the past six years community donations have allowed the Taber and District Health Foundation to purchase an assortment of equipment including: endoscopy equipment, instrumentation for performing gall bladder surgery, equipment for an upgrade/conversion to digital technology for the Diagnostic Imaging Department,  an ultrasound machine, a defibrillator, electronic beds with pressure release mattresses and other items for palliative care, bassinets, a sleep recorder for children with sleep apnea, a chemical analyzer and a dual-headed microscope for Laboratory Services, a vital signs monitor, fetal monitors, assistance with the purchase of a resident tub at Clearview Lodge, and much more.

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