A major funding source for end-of-life care in the North Okanagan won’t be happening this year.
Dancing with the Vernon Stars—the signature fundraising event of the The North Okanagan Hospice Society (NOHS)—has been cancelled due to COVID-19.
The event was scheduled to take place Sept. 25. The NOHS postponed the event in April with the hopes that the annual gala could be held later in the fall. But due to the public safety concerns, social distancing measures and limited crowd size restrictions that are still in place, the decision was made to pull the plug.
The society continues to operate in accordance with public health and safety guidelines, and the decision to cancel was made in the interest of the health and well-being of all involved in the event, and the community community at large.
“We are truly grateful to all of the dance teams, sponsors, suppliers, dance coaches and patrons for their enthusiasm in wanting to be part of our marquee fundraiser,” said Ruth Edwards, executive director of NOHS. “We appreciate their support, cooperation and patience as we made this very difficult decision.”
To sustain operations, the society needs to raise $600,000 each year. Dancing with the Vernon Stars has been a primary fundraising source for the last 12 years and has brought in a total of more than $700,000 for the society’s end-of-life programs.
“The need to raise funds remains for the North Okanagan Hospice Society. It is an essential service and continues to provide quality end-of-life care for the residents of the North Okanagan during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Edwards said.