Everyone from preschoolers to seniors broke open their piggy banks, dug between the cushions of the sofa and emptied their change purses June 1 to support world-class care for kids struggling with mental illness.
After all the pennies were counted, more than $42,500 was raised on the first ever Kelowna General Hospital Foundation Day of Giving.
The funds have been dedicated to the Not Alone campaign to open Foundry Kelowna, an integrated care facility for youth and families struggling to navigate mental health and substance issues.
“The KGH Foundation Day of Giving was inspired by the idea that by working together, real change can be made possible in our community,” said CEO of the KGH Foundation Doug Rankmore. “It is an honor to recognize all the people who just gave what they could, whether it’s spare change or thousands of dollars.”
Kelowna has been selected as one of five sites in B.C. for the clinic, which promises to serve youth ages 12 to 24. The KGH Foundation and CMHA – Kelowna joined forces in launching the Not Alone campaign to raise the $2 million needed to open Foundry Kelowna.
Last year in Kelowna, more than 1,200 youth arrived at KGH’s emergency department in crisis, citing mental health or substance issues as the primary cause.
The provincial statistics reveal one in five youth in B.C. need mental health or substance use services, and less than 25 per cent are getting the help they need.