Health care auxiliary realizes largest total ever
© Darrell Cole – Amherst Daily News
Vicki Daley (second left) and Jean Miller (third left) of Cumberland Health Care Auxiliary accept a $5,000 cheque from Scotiabank employees (from left) Victoria Street branch manager Diana Bacon, Ruth Pipes, Terri Porter, Shelley McInnis and Darlene Smith. The contribution helped push the tally for the 31st Highland Fling over the $40,000 mark.
AMHERST – Organizers of the Highland Fling have more than 40,000 reasons to smile.
The final figures are in and the Cumberland Health Care Auxiliary’s 31st annual fundraiser was a financial success raising more than $40,000 for the first time in its history.
“Last year we raised $37,450 to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Highland Fling. We really didn’t know what to expect this year, but to find out we raised more than $40,000 is truly amazing and reflects the amazing generosity of this community,” Fling organizing committee member Vicki Daley said Friday.
The tally was given a significant boost Friday when Scotiabank employees gathered to represent a $5,000 cheque to auxiliary members as part of the bank’s community program in which the bank matches what’s raised in fundraisers in which its employees volunteer.
Victoria Street branch manager Diana Bacon said the bank is happy to help community projects through both volunteer assistance and financial assistance. Along with the Fling, the bank recently presented $2,000 to the Amherst Rotary Club for its Rotary Auction in support of Camp Tidnish and it will be supporting the Cross Border Challenge again this summer.
It also recently helped the ARHS band trip to Boston.
Money from this year’s Fling is going to purchase an argon laser for the ophthalmology department.
Since its inception, the annual fundraiser has raised in excess of $500,000 to purchase medical equipment at the former Highland View Hospital and the Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre.
Along with the donation from Scotiabank, committee member Jean Miller said the Amherst Lions Club once again came forward with a big contribution. The Lions Club hosted games of chance and sold plants during the Fling, but also collected pennies in the month leading up to the event.
“The Lions gave us $3,100 in recognition of 31 years,” Miller said.
A number of other events were held in advance of the Fling including Dick’s Jamboree’s hosting of the second Sing for the Fling event at ARHS.
Despite the promotion and the work that into preparing for the event, Daley said she was still uncertain of how things would go until the curling club opened May 11.
“You never know how it’s going to go and when you see so many people come through the door you can’t help but breath a big sigh of relief,” Daley said.
Daley said she was amazed by how busy things were this year. She said things generally get quieter in the afternoon of the Fling, but this year the traffic was steady almost to the end.
“I think people support it because it’s for the hospital and everyone is going to need the hospital sometime in their life,” Daley said. “It’s also popular because it’s a family event and there really is something there for everyone.”
Daley said many of the most popular attactions were back this year, including the Kids Korner, the Lioness book sale and the lobster rolls.