The Stettler Hospital and Care Centre is the proud owner of a new portable ultrasound machine thanks to fundraising efforts of a local group.
Fully funded by Stettler’s Festival of Lights, the $60,000 machine was dropped off on Dec. 14.
The ultrasound machine is just the latest in material and equipment that the Festival of Lights committee has donated to the hospital in its 25-years of operation.
According to current committee chair, Amy Roberts, the first year had four women come together and decorate trees in the hospital atrium raising $1,200 in the process.
A quarter-century later, the Festival of Lights has morphed into a week-long event that takes place at the end of every November featuring silent auctions, live entertainment, and a variety of events at the Stettler Community Hall at at other locations around town.
Since its inception, the Festival of Lights has raised over $1.35 million with funds directed to the palliative care room, upgrading the atrium, purchasing birthing beds, purchasing equipment for the ambulance, and some other “little things” that have helped the hospital.
“In turn, (Alberta Health Services) pours more money into our hospital because its viable,” said Roberts, in a recent interview.
The Festival of Lights committee is a 12-person subcommittee of the Stettler Health Services Foundation, though during the week of activities Roberts says as many as 300 volunteers help out.
Even with all the help, Roberts says that it can still make for a week of little sleep.
“I don’t mind though,” said Roberts.
“It’s worth it.”
According to Roberts, the total for the 2022 Festival of Lights is still being calculated but she can “confidently say” that the event raised more than enough to cover the cost of the new ultrasound machine.
The story will be updated when a total becomes available.