The 20th Annual Valentine’s Ball benefitting the West Island Palliative Care Residence (the Residence) was a huge success raising a record breaking amount of
$580,000 net thanks to the generosity of more than 500 guests, sponsors and donors. The annual black- tie event was held at the Pavilion-sur-le-lac of the Château Vaudreuil last night and featured, dinner and dancing with a Roaring 20s theme, fitting for its 20th anniversary. The money raised provides critical funding for the superior palliative care delivered at the Residence.
With last night’s stunning achievement, we are proud to announce that $6 million has gone directly to care for the terminally ill and to provide support for their loved ones. To date we have cared for 4,200 patients and over 17,000 members of their families.
The opening performance by the “Queen of Blues,” Dawn Tyler Watson set the tone for a lively evening. Volunteers dressed like Flappers welcomed an array of guests who provide valuable ongoing support to the Residence. Guests included political, sports, and media figures. Special guests from the world of sports included Anthony Calvillo, Montreal Alouettes quarterback legend, inducted into Canadian Football Hall of Fame and Otis Grant, former WBO Middleweight Champion of the World.
Hosts of the event this year were Yolande James, RDI and CBC political analyst and Director, Foundation Board of the Residence and Ken Connors, Host, CJAD. Well-known journalists, Mark Kelley, host of The Fifth Estate on CBC and Isabelle Richer, ICI RDI and ICI Radio Canada journalist, and host of Isabelle Richer, delivered compelling testimonials, both of whom had loved ones who died at the Residence.
As family members who have both lost a parent at the Residence, we have experienced firsthand what true, quality palliative care is all about. And we both feel fortunate that during one of the hardest times in our lives we could count on the care and revert back to the role of just being sons, one last time,”
said Honorary Co-Presidents of this year’s event Christian Roy, Executive Vice President, Health Division and Partner, TANK Communications and Glenn Watt, Chief Financial Officer, Tenaquip Limited.
Among the local federal, provincial and municipal politicians who attended the sold-out event were federal MPs Frank Baylis (Pierrefonds-Dollard) and Francis Scarpaleggia (Lac-Saint-Louis); Quebec MNA’s Monsef Derraji (Nelligan), Greg Kelley (Jacques-Cartier), Carlos Leitão (Baldwin-Cartier) and Kathleen Weil (Notre-Dame-de-Grace). Also present were the mayors of Kirkland, Pointe-Claire, and the Montreal borough of Pierrefonds/Roxboro.
“I am deeply touched that the community has adopted the Residence as one of its own over the last twenty years and has been with us through every stage of growth said Teresa Dellar, Executive Director and Co-Founder, West Island Palliative Care Residence. “With all of our recent plans to transform the Residence, we have not lost sight of our main priority – taking care of our patients and families. All of the funds raised at the 20th Annual Valentine’s Ball will support our daily, compassionate care. Thank you to each and every one of you for your support.”
We are very grateful to our major sponsors, who have supported the Valentine’s Ball for each of its 20 years: Charles River, TASK, Pfizer Canada, and Merck Canada. Other sponsors included Eurostyle Fashion, Novartis, Otis Grant & Friends Foundation and another 20 year contributor, the City of Pointe- Claire. The Air Canada Foundation and the Montreal Airport Marriott In-Terminal Hotel helped carry on a yearly tradition by graciously donating prizes for the raffle draw to raise funds during the evening.
Organizing Committee Co-Chairs – Victoria D’Elia, Chief Financial Officer, Eurostyle Fashion and
Linda Ward O’Farrell, President, Ward O’Farrell Consultants Inc. mention that “It takes a dedicated team to organize the largest fundraising event benefitting the Residence. We would like to thank the committee, a wonderful group of volunteers and staff who made organizing the 20th edition of the Ball lots of fun, but also a resounding success.”
About the West Island Palliative Care Residence
The West Island Palliative Care Residence is an independent, non-profit organization that provides services free of charge to patients and their families. The Residence receives one-third of its annual operational budget from the Quebec government and relies on community support and fundraising activities to raise the balance of more than 3.5 million dollars each year. With its 23 beds, the Residence is the largest freestanding palliative care facility in Canada and is recognized as a leader in its field.
In 2018, the Residence embarked on a fundraising campaign to support two new initiatives to raise the relevance and appeal of the Residence by consolidating its two sites into a single, cost-efficient facility and launching its new branch, the Montreal Institute for Palliative Care.
For more information, go to www.residencesoinspalliatifs.com/en.
Feature image: Dawn Tyler Watson, “Queen of Blues” Singer/Actor/Songwriter