Hundreds of donors from the South Okanagan’s Indo-Canadian community have given more than $500,000 over five years to the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation’s $20-million campaign to provide medical equipment for the Penticton Regional Hospital expansion.
The Indo-Canadian community in the South Okanagan-Similkameen takes great pride in giving.
One of the best examples is the incredible support they have given to Penticton Regional Hospital – totalling more than half-a-million dollars over the past five years. Their impressive gift was recently bolstered by a further $30,500 donation. This raises the overall donation to more than $530,000 in honour of Guru Tegh Bahadur (1621-1675) – one of the 10 historic gurus in the Sikh religion.
The donations have been recognized in the new PRH tower with the South Okanagan Indo-Canadian Community’s name linked with the Medical Imaging Department. Carey Bornn, Executive Director of the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation, said the Indo-Canadian community has been one of the top donors in the Foundation’s $20-million campaign to provide medical equipment for the PRH expansion.
“We are thrilled by the tremendous generosity shown by the Indo-Canadian donors to PRH,” said Bornn. “What a great example they have provided to all of us.” As part of its fundraising efforts, the Indo-Canadian community held two gala banquets in Penticton in support of the SOS Medical Foundation’s PRH campaign in 2015 and 2016. Organizers of their overall fundraising effort prefer to remain out of the public spotlight, since the donations have come from more than 300 individual donors throughout the region from Peachland south to Osoyoos and Keremeos.
“We’d like to sincerely thank the Indo-Canadian donors for their help in our PRH campaign. They were among the first to step forward when our campaign was launched in 2015,” Bornn said.
Construction of Phase 2 of the PRH expansion – including a major upgrade to the Emergency Department – is now underway and due to be completed by 2021. The Punjabi community also hosts the annual Mela for Cancer festival at Gyro Park in August which has raised more than $60,000 over the last three years for the BC Cancer Foundation. The Mela was initiated in 2017 by a local teenaged girl whose grandmother had passed away following a lengthy battle with ovarian cancer.