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Fort Macleod Health Foundation fund-raiser close to your heart

denise joel

Denise Joel

Fort Macleod Health Foundation is asking people to support a cause close to their heart — local health care.
“Close to Your Heart” is the theme of the foundation’s annual dinner, auction and dance in support of Fort Macleod Health Centre.
The theme is a nod to February being national Heart and Stroke month, as well as the reality that health care is at the heart of the Fort Macleod community.
“It touches everybody in some way,” foundation chair Denise Joel said.
The “Close to Your Heart” fund-raiser is Saturday, Feb. 27 at Fort Macleod and District Community Hall.
Guests will be treated to a prime rib dinner, live and silent auctions, raffles of beer and wine tables, and dancing to the band Fast Times.
The annual fund-raising dinner, auction and dance has undergone some changes this year, beginning with a new date.
The foundation decided to move the event to February, from it’s long-time position on the October social calendar.
“The reason we changed the date was it conflicted with some other major fund-raisers,” Joel said. “We felt it was asking a lot of businesses to support several major events in a month”
The foundation is not focused on one project this year. Rather, it is working to fund the never-ending list of upgrades and improvements at Fort Macleod Health Centre.
Proceeds this year go to the purchase of equipment and funding programs that enhance patient services and health programs in Fort Macleod.
“There are always new equipment needs, there’s always new technology, there’s always things that need upgrading,” said Joel, former site manager at Fort Macleod Health Centre. “In the health system you’re not always first on the list. There are the essentials they cover, but upgrades, that‘s where health foundations are really valuable.”
Joel said the importance of small upgrades — such as a bed, chairs or key piece of equipment — cannot be underestimated.
“Even that new bed can make someone’s stay more comfortable,” Joel said.
“Close to Your Heart” will have a more country, or rustic, feel than in past.
“It’s going to have more of a traditional feel, more of a western feel,” Joel said.
LA Chefs will prepare prime rib, along with a citrus chicken option. Dinner will include fresh rolls, creamy pasta salad, garden salad, caesar salad, Thai noodle salad, assorted cheese platter, strawberry spinach salad, broccoli and cauliflower mornay, green beans almandine, honey glazed carrots with dill, wild rice pilaf, fully loaded whipped potato, dessert and coffee and tea.
Kyle Nielson is master of ceremonies for the evening.
Foundation members are canvassing the community for donations of cash and auction items to be sold by auctioneer Ryan Konynenbelt.
“Already we’ve been blown away by the support we’ve had.” Joel said. “There are some really great things in the live auction. We are grateful because we realize people have a lot of asks. Everybody gets a lot of requests, and there are so many great causes.”
The foundation is selling 235 tickets to “Close to Your Heart.”
“They’re selling well,” Joel said. “It’s a great event for a great cause, and it’s a lot of fun.”
To reserve tickets or to make a donation call Denise Joel at 403-553-2787; Ute Eremenko at 403-553-2551; Corinne Conner at 403-553-4388; Debbie Vanee at 403-553-2674; Merline Heal at 403-553-3010; Val Kostelansky at 403-892-2417; or Dyan Lockhorst at 403-553-0099.

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