Bright plan for Amherst hospital

Christopher
Christopher Gooding
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Campaign cheers up all, upgrades equipment

AMHERST – The sixteenth annual Light the Way campaign is poised to mark a significant milestone this year.

Gwen Kerr, managing director for the Cumberland Health Care Foundation, says the annual Light the Way campaign is a fun-filled fundraiser that’s easy for anyone – young or old – to get behind.

The annual night of entertainment, music and holiday themed light show designed towards entertaining guests and visitors to the Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre  [CRHCC] is steered by the Cumberland Health Care Foundation, and managing director Gwen Kerr says this year is an important one for the fundraiser.

Proceeds raised through sponsorship of the lights have gone towards equipment for the hospital and this year is no different. The foundation is looking to upgrade one of the hospital’s three operating rooms by upgrading its digital imaging monitors, cameras and accessories used for during minimally invasive surgical procedures like laparoscopy.

“These aren’t the same televisions you would buy at the mall,” Kerr said. “They’re much more complex and hook up to specialized equipment.”

The benefits of up to date monitors and cameras are two-fold, Kerr said. For the patient, the procedure is less invasive and only requires a small incision, while for the surgeons and operating staff it gives them greater detail and control during the procedure.

“For the surgeons, this allows them to perform to the best of their abilities,” Kerr said. “And having top notch equipment is a draw when recruiting new surgeons.”

The Light the Way event will take place Wednesday, Nov. 27, at the CRHCC, beginning at 5:30 p.m. As in previous years, it’s expected to be a thrill.

“All of the lights are animated to music, and can be enjoyed indoors at the hospital or outside,” Kerr said. “We’ll have refreshments, entertainment mascots. Kids really enjoy it.”

The light show and displays will stay up through the holidays to the benefit of long-term patients at the hospital, Kerr said, but using the Light the Way campaign to introduce children to the hospital setting is not only fun, but carries benefits for the future.

“It’s a nice way to bring children into the hospital and make them feel comfortable with the hospital so it’s not a scary place,” Kerr said.

For the kids, there’s also the promise of chocolate milk, face painting and cookies. And it’s free.

Money is raised through the campaign by sponsorship of the lights. For as little as two dollars, children can get involved and sponsor a light in name of a loved one, while businesses and more generous pockets can latch on to guardian angels, lighted trees, deer and wreaths. It all comes together, Kerr said, in a magnificent display for all to enjoy.

The anticipated cost of the upgrades the foundation wants to accomplish is between $80,000 and $90,000. For more information or to donate contact the Cumberland Health Care Foundation by calling 902-667-5400 ext 6210 or visiting www.chcfoundation.com.

Organizations: Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre, Cumberland Health Care Foundation, Amherst hospital

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