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Merry Christmas: North Okanagan healthcare auxiliary donates $200K

Armstrong Spallumcheen Healthcare Auxiliary, which operates Bargain Bin in Armstrong, doles out cash

Nowhere in the North Okanagan is there a better deal for healthcare organizations than at the little white storefront with blue trim at the west end of Armstrong’s Pleasant Valley Boulevard.

The Bargain Bin is a longtime thrift store operated by volunteers with the Armstrong Spallumcheen Healthcare Auxiliary (ASHA). On Monday, Dec. 4, ASHA announced it is donating $200,000 to local healthcare and wellness initiatives in 2023.

“This is made possible by the generous community donations of clothing and household items that are sorted, priced, and sold by a dedicated group of 55 member volunteers,” said Carolyn Farris, herself a proud blue Bargain Bin smock-wearing volunteer, who hosted the presentation of 14 cheques inside the store Monday.

Those 55 volunteers have contributed more than 11,000 hours of their time from January to September with more hours coming in until the end of December.

“We also want to thank the shoppers who patronize the store and take advantage of our great items at great prices,” said Farris. “Whether they come infrequently or are regular customers they all contribute to the funds we return to the community.”

Broken down in groups, ASHA donated $117,500 to the Vernon Jubilee and Shuswap Hospital Foundations; $43,000 to food programs; $23,500 to community health societies; and $16,000 in bursaries including awarding scholarships to a pair of local students who will study medicine at UBC Okanagan.

Funding recipients include:

VERNON JUBILEE HOSPITAL FOUNDATION

• VJH, Light A Bulb campaign, Echo machine – $33,000;

• Pleasant Valley Manor and Parkview Place, patient bus – $25,000;

• Pleasant Valley Centre Vision Clinic, steam sterilizer – $17,500;

• Pleasant Valley Manor, patient comfort, blanket warmer – $6,000;

• Parkview Place, patient comfort, blanket warmer, $6,000;

SHUSWAP HOSPITAL FOUNDATION

• Shuswap Lake General Hospital, cardiac monitors for ER and cardiology – $30,000;

COMMUNITY HEALTH SOCIETIES

• North Okanagan Hospice Society, patient comfort equipment – $10,000;

• Medical Equipment Loan Cupboard Society, four wheelchairs – $6,000;

• Community Dental Access Centre North Okanagan Society – $5,000;

• NexusBC Vial for Life – $2,500;

FOOD PROGRAMS

• Armstrong/Spallumcheen Food Bank (Boys and Girls Club) – $20,000;

• Enderby Food Bank (FED) – $15,000;

• Glad Tidings Brown Bag Lunch Program (Armstrong schools) – $3,000;

• School Breakfast and Lunch Programs (Enderby, Grindrod, Falkland) – $2,500;

• North Okanagan Good Food Box, Armstrong and Enderby – $2,500;

BURSARIES

$16,000.

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Roger Knox

About the Author: Roger Knox

I am a journalist with more than 30 years of experience in the industry. I started my career in radio and have spent the last 21 years working with Black Press Media.
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