The five Greater Victoria Canadian Tire store owners hold up the $75,171 cheque for Royal Jubilee Hospital. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Canadian Tire Fix-A-Heart campaign raises more than $75,000 for Royal Jubilee Hospital

Donations will help purchase infusion pumps for cardiac care units

Customers, staff and community members that took part in the 2019 Canadian Tire Fix-A-Heart campaign raised more than $75,000 for heart health in Victoria.

On Jan. 23, the owners of the five Greater Victoria Canadian Tire locations presented Royal Jubilee Hospital (RJH) staff with a cheque for $75,171. The ceremony took place at the Hillside Canadian Tire, marking the end of another Fix-A-Heart campaign. The store owners noted how honoured they were to be part of the fundraising.

The Fix-A-Heart campaign – started by the former Langford Canadian Tire owner Peter Spillette – began its 17th year of fundraising on Nov. 24, 2019. Donations were collected until Dec. 24 for the Heart Health team at RJH.

The infusion pumps are used daily at the Royal Jubilee Hospital to provide patients with medication and nutrients. (Photo courtesy Gaëlle van Erp)

When Spillette died in 2008, store owners and staff pledged to continue to host the campaign and raise $1-million for RJH in his honour.

During the 2019 campaign, customers at the five Greater Victoria Canadian Tire locations were asked to donate any amount they could while at the till.

Those who contributed more than $5 were able to post a paper heart acknowledging their contribution on the store walls.

“Heart health is near and dear to many of us in the community, and we are so grateful to contribute to the great work done by our expert caregivers at Royal Jubilee Hospital,” said current Langford Canadian Tire store owner Mark Barsanti, adding how special it was to see everyone contribute to Spillette’s legacy.

Barsanti’s store, as well as the other locations in Greater Victoria, matched customer donations up to $20,000.

In 2018, $41,445 was raised and proceeds from the campaign funded vital signs monitors.

The 2019 proceeds will go towards computerized infusion pumps, which are used daily to provide patients with personalized intravenous nutrients and medications in a continuous and safe way, said Teresa Hanna, manager of the Coronary Care Unit, Cardiovascular Unit, Perfusion Services and Heart Health at RJH.

The pumps make a “huge difference to the patient population and to the nurses,” she said.

They remove the need for hand calculations meaning nurses have more time to focus on their patients and there is less room for error.

“It relieves stress because you know it’s accurate,” Hanna said. “They’re lifesavers.”

Since 2003, the Fix-A-Heart campaign has raised more than $915,500 for cardiac care on Vancouver Island.


@devonscarlett
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devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

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