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Group of respiratory therapists holding a fundraising cheque
Respiratory Therapists with Hamilton Health Sciences raised more than $4,000 for Hospital 2 Home’s food division, as part of the #HCWS4Food campaign.
August 7, 2020

Pandemic pay-it-forward fundraiser a success

Imagine turning $4000 into $50,000 to help feed people in your community.

That’s just what a team of HHS Respiratory Therapists (RTs) did during the recent #HCWS4FOOD fundraising campaign.

Stepping up to the challenge

The group raised $4,221 for Hospital 2 Home’s food division, during the period of June 12 – July 3. The H2H program offers many services, including providing nutritious meals for at-risk patients who have recently been discharged from the hospital.

The #HCWS4FOOD fundraiser was originally started by health care workers at Southlake Regional Health Centre in Newmarket. They challenged health care workers at other Ontario hospitals to fundraise for local food programs in an effort to give back to communities affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

“Felt like a perfect fit”

Lori Reimer, a respiratory therapist at Hamilton General Hospital, saw the campaign on social media and suggested that HHS RTs participate. Her colleagues enthusiastically agreed, including Charge Respiratory Therapist Claudia Poulin.

“It is a pandemic pay-it-forward movement, and it felt like a perfect fit since our community has shown deep gratitude to the HHS RTS by generously offering delicious meals, a new coffee machine, treats, hand-sewn caps, and continuous well wishes throughout this pandemic,” says Poulin.

From there, plans for the challenge quickly fell into place. With the support of the RT Professional Practice Council and H2H, HHS RTs raised the most out of the six health care centres that participated.

Poulin says, “RTs would like to thank all health care workers for their support, with a special thanks going out to Lori Reimer, Germaine Le and the HHS RT Professional Practice Council for leading this drive.”

Inspired an additional donation

In addition to the $4,221 raised, a separate donation was made to H2H by someone who learned of the HHS RT’s fundraiser. This additional donation bumped the total to a whopping $50,000.

Are any more fundraisers in the plans? Not at this time, but adds Poulin, “we certainly are motivated and have demonstrated how a group of health care workers can rally together and campaign for a great cause.”