Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, In April, 1997, the Stanton Regional Hospital Foundation began a fundraising campaign for medical equipment. The goal was to raise $2 million over three years. Now, only two years later, the foundation has achieved its goal. The latest figures show that $2.4 million has been raised, and funds are still coming in.
There are some impressive figures, some 98 businesses made donations including some small family operations as well as big corporations. There were 28 groups such as non-profit societies, and community councils contributed and 348 individuals opened their wallets and cheque books. Donations were received from almost every one of the 36 communities the hospital serves.
People and businesses from every community were very generous, but there is one community that should be mentioned. During the November telethon 62 phone pledges were received from the community of Taloyoak. That is a notable achievement as there are only 65 phone numbers listed in the community, Mr. Speaker. I would like to thank everyone for their donations and certainly Mr. Ningark would have been very proud in this House of his community.
The equipment the hospital can now purchase will save many thousands if not hundreds of thousands of dollars for this government on an annual basis. The foundation's success is the result of many dedicated volunteers. I want to thank them all for their tremendous efforts. In particular, thanks to Cappy Elkin, chair of the campaign committee; and Loretta Foley and Gerome Babyn, co-chairs of the telethon; foundation board members: Alan Hathaway, who is the chairman; Greg Merrithew, vice-chair; Bill Graham, Dr. Hassan Adam, Joe Auge, Ric Bolivar, Daryl Dolynny, John Ferguson, Richard Hardy, Margaret Hawkins, Gordon Van Tighem, Gary Walsh, Leslee Warren, Dennis Cleaver, and Carol Walsh. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.