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Riverside Foundation moves online for fundraiser 50-50

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If you were disappointed by the Canada Day Cash lottery going missing this summer, the Riverside Foundation for Health Care wants you to know there’s still going to be a great chance to win some cash and help out our local healthcare providers.

In place of the traditional Canada Day lottery the organization puts on, the Riverside Foundation will be launching an online 50-50 draw this month to raise funds for healthcare providers and give two lucky winners the chance to either grab an excellent early bird prize or take home their share of the winnings.

Riverside Foundation for Health Care Director Allison Cox explained that their hands were forced when it came time to deciding whether or not they could run the Canada Day lottery, but that this online draw is designed to satisfy the urge she’s seen to support the Foundation.

“We made the decision not to go ahead with the Canada Day cash lottery this year because of the lack of places we would be able to sell tickets and we didn't want volunteers having to handle money,” Cox said.

“So we started trying to think of what are some other things we could be doing to safely raise funds, and out came our online electronic 50-50 draw. We're excited to see how the public responds to it, I think a lot of people are still willing to assist the foundation right now but haven't really been sure how to.”

The online 50-50 draw has some heavy lifting to do for the Foundation, as the COVID-19 pandemic has affected not only the Canada Day Cash Lottery, but also the Foundation’s Spring Luncheon and Fall Gala, two other events that raise a significant amount of money for the projects or items the organization collects money for.

“The need is still here,” Cox said.

“The facilities are always in need of capital equipment, things are constantly needing to be replaced once they hit their end of life cycle. This year these funds are going to be going towards two new bladder scanners, one which will be located at La Verendrye Hospital and one at Rainycrest, and these come at a cost of about $7,000 each. We're hoping to raise as much as we can through this raffle, and then anything that doesn't come, we're still going to support the facilities by using our general funds to top up anything we're short.”

Cox said the new bladder scanners are portable, which makes it much easier on patients who need to make use of the scanners to have the procedure done by having it come to them.

One bonus to the online format of the draw is that there are no physical tickets that need to be printed, which in turn means there is no limit either to the amount of tickets that can be sold or just how big the pot can get.

“The sky is the limit,” Cox said.

“As many tickets as people want to purchase, they can purchase them. The more people are willing to support, the more money will be available for the winner.”

The tickets will be going up for sale on July 20 at three for $5, 10 for $10 and 60 for $20 and the final draw will take place on Monday, September 7 at 5:00 p.m. There will also be an early bird draw to encourage people to take part, and Cox said she’s grateful to the individuals who donated the early bird prize as their industry is facing significant challenges during the pandemic.

“Duane and Grace Cridland normally donate our early bird draw for the Canada Day cash lottery and that's a fishing package to the Manitou Weather Station which they own, so they generously agreed to donate again for our online 50-50 draw,” she explained.

“We're so grateful for them, I know like other resorts in the area they probably are suffering quite a bit right now too, so we were very appreciative that they were able to offer us this early bird package again. I'd also encourage everyone, even if you don't win the package, to check out their website and see what they're all about because they are taking Canadian guests right now.”

According to Cox, the early bird prize is a three-night fishing package for two, courtesy of Manitou Weather Station Fishing Lodge that is valued at just over $2,000. The early bird draw will take place on Friday, August 7 at 9:00 a.m., which gives the public a little over two weeks to buy their tickets and get in on the early bird action.

Keeping in mind that a number of supporters of the Foundation might not want to take part in ordering their tickets online, Cox assured the public that a mail order form for tickets should be appearing in mailboxes around the end of this week, though if anyone doesn’t get one they can contact her directly to get something set up.

“If they choose to do the mail order form then we will be mailing their ticket stubs to them,” she said.

Anyone who wants to buy some tickets to support the Riverside Foundation for Health Care is encouraged to keep an eye on www.riversidefoundation.ca/5050 for more information, rules of play and tickets once they become available for purchase.

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