New West group hosts fundraiser for Royal Columbian Hospital

Group of Five and Rotary Club of New Westminster celebrate opening of play area at RCH

The Group of Five and Friends Benevolent Society has found a festive way of kicking off the holiday season and helping Royal Columbian Hospital.

The nonprofit is holding a Candy Cane Christmas silent auction on Thursday, Nov. 24 from 4:30 to 7 p.m. at the Galbraith House at 131 Eighth St. In addition to the silent auction, the event features refreshments.

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“We are looking to buy a piece of equipment for the emergency ward,” said Alana McIntyre, president of the Group of Five. “It’s a vital monitor that we are raising funds for. Instead of getting your blood pressure being done and your heart being monitored, it’s all done with one machine. It’s a comfort piece of equipment for the patient, and better for the doctors and nurses.”

Tickets are $25 and available from any member of the Group of Five or by calling Betty McIntosh at 604-524-1790.

The group’s latest fundraiser comes on the heels of a ribbon-cutting for a new play area and mural next to the ambulatory care department at Royal Columbian Hospital. The Group of Five and the Rotary Club of New Westminster provided just over $7,500 for the project, including some funds contributed by the Quayside Community Board.

The play area is on the main floor of Royal Columbian Hospital, not far from the casting room.

“I have sat in the casting area many times, having three grandsons and a granddaughter. You need something to keep their attention because it’s a long wait. Sometimes the other children in the family need something to play or do something,” McIntyre said. “I think it is a real advantage to the hospital to have it. I think it will make the hospital that much more comfortable for waiting, for the children and for the parents.”

Founded by Gerda Suess and Shirley Piper, the Group of Five’s members include Suess, McIntyre, Helen Bodner, Kathy Gibson, McIntosh and Brenda Adams. The nonprofit raises money to buy equipment for various departments at Royal Columbian Hospital.

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