Get inked for good cause
Okanagan Edge Staff - Feb 19 - Get Involved

Photo: Contributed

If you’ve been thinking about getting a tattoo, you might want to circle March 9 on your calendar and get one for a good cause.

That’s the day Kelowna’s Jays and Arrows Tattoo Inc. will be raising money for the Central Okanagan Elizabeth Fry Society, which supports women and children affected by sexual abuse, exploitation or violence.

“Women and children’s services are near and dear to me,” owner and artist Darcy Cameron said in a press release. “There was a time in my childhood when we had to call on services like Elizabeth Fry. They helped us get through a tough time, and thankfully now I’m in a position to give back.”

International Women’s Day is March 9, so Jays and Arrows will be conducting a 99 Red Balloons Tattoo Marathon. Four artists will tattoo non-stop from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., putting a single red balloon on 99 people. Each tattoo will cost $99, with all of the money going to the Elizabeth Fry Society.

Donations will also be accepted from those who want to help but aren’t ready to get a tattoo.

Toys’R’Us battles bullying
Okanagan Edge Staff - Feb 15 - Get Involved

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Toys’R’Us is once again doing all it can to end bullying.

The toy store will be handing out 100 pink T-shirts at each of its locations on Saturday for kids to wear on Anti-Bullying Day, which is Wednesday, Feb. 27.

Pink Shirt Day, as Anti-Bullying Day is also known, originated in Canada in 2007 and inspires Canadians to take action against violence and bullying.

The T-shirts, which read ‘Be a Buddy, Not a Bully,’ will be given away starting at 11 a.m. on Saturday at all 82 of Canada’s Toys’R’Us and Babies’R’Us stores.

KGH wants more heart
Jon Manchester - Feb 13 - Get Involved

Photo: Contributed

A $7-million campaign was launched Tuesday to bring advanced heart rhythm services to Kelowna General Hospital.

The KGH Foundation’s Right Here at KGH campaign will keep Interior patients closer to home.

Every year, hundreds of patients from across the Interior must wait up to eight weeks for a bed to become available at hospitals in the Lower Mainland or on Vancouver Island.

Bringing a state-of-the-art electrophysiology lab to KGH will make it the regional hub for IH’s cardiac sciences program.

“The KGH Foundation makes it possible for these advanced services to be available right here in the Interior because of the support that is provided by the community,” foundation CEO Doug Rankmore said. “Working together we are able to provide funding to allow services like cardiac electrophysiology to be offered sooner than may have otherwise been the case. This is part of what makes KGH an advanced healthcare facility.”

“As cardiac physicians and surgeons, we are absolutely working arm-in-arm with the KGH Foundation to bring EP to KGH. We’ve already seen first-hand how donors can have a direct impact on the quality and accessibility of patient care we can deliver,” said Dr. Kathryn Brown, medical director of IH cardiac diagnostics.

The goal is to have the EP lab operational by the summer of 2020, and it will provide more than 450 life-saving therapies per year.

Heart rhythm services encompass the evaluation and treatment of patients with a variety of cardiac rhythm disorders, also known as arrhythmia.

Currently, only basic heart rhythm services are available at KGH, one of five cardiac centres in B.C. and the only one east of Metro Vancouver.

Arrhythmias are projected to be the leading cause of death in Canada by 2020.

Ramsays donate 50K
Jon Manchester - Feb 08 - Get Involved

Photo: Contributed

A Kelowna family is continuing its patriarch’s legacy with a $50,000 donation to the Kelowna General Hospital Foundation.

The gift from Darlene Ramsay and daughters Laura and Kathryn is in honour of the late Jim Ramsay, and will pay for a bedroom at JoeAnna’s House, a home away from home for families of patients that is under construction on the KGH campus.

The 20-room home will serve families who have to travel to Kelowna for specialized health care.

Jim Ramsay died unexpectedly in June 2016 and had previously made a significant gift to the foundation, towards the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

The Ramsays have also donated prizes for the live auction at the KGH Foundation’s Heart of Gold Gala, and offered complimentary makeovers to KGH nursing staff for the annual Innkeeper’s fete.

“It’s our hope that everyone who comes to JoeAnna’s House will feel safe, warm and loved,” Darlene said in a press release.

Construction on JoeAnna’s House is expected to be complete by Christmas 2019.

Penti-con needs money
Dale Boyd - Feb 04 - Get Involved

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Penticton’s pop culture convention is growing year over year but is in need of some assistance to make the 2019 convention happen.

Moving from Penticton Lakeside Resort to Penticton Trade and Convention Centre in 2018 bumped up costs for last year’s Penti-con, and the non-profit organization is seeking to make up the funds with help from the community.

“We are trying to see if we can get the community involved because this event is growing,” Penti-con Association board chair Lily Wilson said. “We love tying into the community as is, so hopefully if some of the business or people come forward and are willing to donate then we would love to build on that relationship.”

The convention has seen guests like Star Trek Voyager’s Garrett Wang and My Little Pony voice actress Chantal Strand, who attended in June 2018, and Penti-con is looking at guests including some of the cast of the popular sci-fi TV series Stargate for this year. Penti-con is also looking at bringing in entertainment and a unique coding workshop for youth this year as well.

“We can’t book them until we know for sure,” Wilson said. “We’re waiting on a grant from the city as well.”

The organization will need financial help to make this year’s event happen by making up owed funds of around $3,000 for last year. Penti-con is seeking businesses or individuals who are looking to get involved. Promotional opportunities are on offer in return for donations, and Penti-con is asking for a base donation of $100.

Donations can be made via PayPal here.

Business blood challenge
Okanagan Edge Staff - Feb 01 - Get Involved

Photo: Contributed

Peacock Sheridan Group has thrown down the gauntlet once again.

For the second year in a row, the financial planning company is challenging other Kelowna businesses to take one day in February and donate blood to support patients in need.

Peacock Sheridan partner Grant Sheridan is also the GM of the Kelowna Chiefs junior B hockey team, so he had members of his squad on hand for Thursday’s launch event at the Canadian Blood Services donor centre on Dilworth Drive.

Also in attendance were former hockey referee and Canadian Blood Services volunteer Brett Shaigec and his girlfriend Jordan Korol, a UBCO Heat women’s basketball forward. Korol beat acute lymphoblastic leukemia when she was three years old, needing blood transfusions along the way.

Putting fun in fundraiser
Okanagan Edge Staff - Jan 30 - Get Involved

Photo: Contributed

The United Way is conducting a fun and friendly competition for Okanagan businesses to raise some money.

The Super Mega Ultimate Techathlon will be held between March 7 and April 25, and it will consist of eight unique challenges. Teams of up to 10 members will pay $500 to take part, with the money going towards <CODE>anagan, a non-profit program that helps local youth build their tech skills.

“The Okanagan tech ecosystem is made of thousands of collaborative and supportive entrepreneurs, coaches, mentors, talent and supporters,” Accelerate Okanagan’s Alex Goodhew said in a press release. “I truly value what the <CODE>anagan program stands for and the Techathlon event is such a fun, easy way to give back and support the next generation of Okanagan tech superstars.”

Some of the fundraising challenges include an audio remix contest, stock photo competition and a rock-paper-scissors tournament at the closing ceremonies on April 25.

“There’s no denying that Okanagan Tech is buzzing,” United Way Central and South Okanagan executive director Helen Jackman said. “But too many young people in our community just don’t believe they could get involved. They lack the skills, resources and, above all, the confidence to even dream of a future in tech. <CODE>anagan blows a hole in that, kick-starting aspiration and equipping them with skills and expert connections.”

Click here for more information on the Super Mega Ultimate Tecathlon.

Stone Sisters give back
Okanagan Edge Staff - Jan 29 - Get Involved

Photo: Contributed
Tamara (left) Shannon Stone.

The Stone Sisters Group donated $14,400 to four Kelowna charities in 2018.

Shannon and Tamara Stone donated a portion of their real estate fees to causes that were important to their clients.

Their clients’ four most popular choices were Foundry Kelowna, KGH/JoeAnna’s House, BC Cancer and BrainTrust Canada.

“We feel so fortunate to live in such an amazing community and want to help others enjoy a good quality of life here,” the Stone sisters said in a press release. “All the organizations that we support resonate with us as a team and we feel grateful to be able to give back.”

Culinary money aids groups
Okanagan Edge Staff - Jan 28 - Get Involved

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The Canadian Culinary Championships that are being held in Kelowna this weekend will have a big impact on two area organizations.

Rutland Middle School and Kamloops’ Mount Paul Community Food Centre will be the benefactors of money raised at the annual competition.

Rutland Middle School plans to restock its instrument inventory, while the Mount Paul Community Food Centre will continue to provide youth with the opportunity to learn how to grow, cook and share good food.

The Canadian Culinary Championships will be held Friday and Saturday, when 11 chefs will compete for gold in three events over two days that will test their skills, creativity and endurance.

Two added to IHA board
Okanagan Edge Staff - Jan 02 - Get Involved

File photo

The Interior Health Authority has two new board members, three who have been reappointed and another who is on her way out.

Allan Louis and Karen Hamling are the newcomers to the board, while Tammy Tugnum, Dennis Rounsville and Diane Jules were reappointed. Patricia Dooley, meanwhile, has left the board.

Louis is an Okanagan Indian Band councillor, co-chair of the Aboriginal Education Committee for School District 22 and a member of the First Nations Health Council. Hamling is the former four-term mayor of Nakusp and retired after many years as the health records supervisor at Arrow Lakes Hospital. Currently she helps with a forestry contracting business and is the treasurer of the Nakusp and Area Community Foundation. She is a licensed practical nurse and is an accredited health record technician.

Tugnum is the general manager at Cariboo Chevrolet Buick in Williams Lake, Rounsville is the retired president of the Forest Products Group for Tembec Inc., and Jules has been president of the Sexqeltkemc Ltd. Partnership since 2010.

The remaining members of the IHA board include Dr. Doug Cochrane, who is the chairperson, Joyce Beddow, Dr. Selena Lawrie, Cindy Stewart and Spring Hawes.

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