The Health Foundation's campaign to raise funds for the purchase of a new ultrasound machine for this health region is seeing success. Two more generous donations have come in, boosting the effort to a new level.
The Breast Friends group has made a donation of $10,000 and Violet Hnatuk of Yorkton presented a cheque for $5,000.
"The proceeds of our latest book will support the fight against prostate cancer," says Jeannie Johnson, the Breast Friend who recently presented a cheque on behalf of the organization to the foundation.
"Our previous books have supported creating awareness and enhanced detection regarding Breast Cancer in women. In addition we have supported many cancer prevention and treatment initiatives generally across the country.
"This is the first time we are specifically targeting prostate cancer, which affects only men. We want to help raise awareness regarding prostate cancer, we want to make it ok to talk about prostate cancer and about the need to be tested, just as it is common for men and women to talk about breast cancer."
Far too many men, says Johnson, do not go to their doctor to get checked annually.
"Men seem to be uncomfortable talking about prostate cancer and about having the test done. That has to change. We have lost far too many men to this disease; we cannot allow our men to continue to shy away from discussing it and avoid being checked for this disease when they go to the doctor."
During a separate presentation event held late last week Yorkton's Violet Hnatuk donated another $5,000 towards the cause. Violet and her late husband Andy have made many generous donations including a $5,000 donation last year to help fund the conceptual plan for a new regional hospital, and a $30,000 donation in 2005 to assist buying the CT Scan.
When asked why she donates so generously she says, "When my husband was alive he used the services of the hospital quite a bit, and I've used the hospital too. Just last year I was in the hospital for two weeks. We use the hospital, have our tests and procedures done, sometimes we are in the hospital for a few days or a few weeks, and, we walk out without having to pay a bill. I've always had good service in the hospital and I think it's appropriate to make a contribution; I think more people should."
Hnatuk and her husband started donating many years ago, about as soon as The Health Foundation was set up.
"We made donations for many years, but our first big donation was for the CT Scan. Andy was always having to go to Regina to get a CT Scan, and when you have a bad back you don't want to go to Regina in an ambulance. When we had to opportunity to get a CT Scan for the Yorkton Hospital, we made a big donation.
Having a CT Scan here makes it so much easier to get the tests you need, not just for us but for everyone. "I intend to keep making donations to The Health Foundation; they raise money for equipment we need locally, equipment that helps to provide all of us new and improved healthcare services.
"We are really grateful for the strong support Mrs. Hnatuk provides to our work," says Ross Fisher, Executive Director of The Health Foundation. "We are also grateful to the Breast Friends for the wonderful work they do raising funds and awareness for breast cancer. I hope they are as successful doing the same for prostate cancer.
"This $10,000 is a significant donation, and it will greatly help us move our fundraising for the additional ultrasound equipment forward."