A $46,000 donation raised by auctioning off jerseys and a golf bag will go towards a new incubator for babies at the Humboldt Hospital.
The donation, presented at the Humboldt Broncos home game Jan. 12, was the result of an effort between the Jim Pattinson Children's Hospital Foundation, Saskatoon Blades and Saskatoon-based Synergy 8 Community Builders done in the wake of the April 6 crash of the Broncos team bus.
“This donation is a huge boost for us,” said Lorrie Bunko, the Humboldt District Hospital Foundation's executive director. “We're actually able to purchase outright a brand new incubator for our labour delivery recovery room.”
At their home opener Sept. 22, the Blades wore and auctioned off special #togetherstronger jerseys, which has the names of all 29 people that were on the bus. In August, professional golfer Alena Sharp donated her Humboldt Broncos golf donation, which was auctioned off for $19,000.
Troy Davies, who’s with Synergy 8, said the crash was a shock to people in Saskatoon.
“We have personal connections to some of the players that were on that bus and we wanted to do something,” he said. “We have a long partnership with the Saskatoon Blades and said, ‘hey, is there anything from a hockey perspective and a fundraising perspective where we can connect the two of us and raise some dollars to make a difference for the community?’”
The Jim Pattinson Children's Hospital Foundation had phoned Bunko after the crash and asked her what the hospital needed. Corey Miller, who’s on the Children's Hospital Foundation board of directors, said it was a no-brainer to partner with the other organizations on a project that would end with a legacy that would keep Humboldt and area’s children healthy.
“This partnership between these four organizations was certainly natural, it was the right thing to do and it worked out great.”
Replacing the incubator, which will cost $43,000, became a priority for the Humboldt District Hospital Foundation early in 2018.
“The one that we currently have is in excess of 25 years and we have to replace it because the motor on that one is too loud, which is not meeting regulations because it's too hard on babies’ ears,” Bunko said.
The executive director added the local hospital foundation has received 14 of the #togetherstronger jerseys, which it plans to sell off in a sealed bid auction in February.