Dr. Yiu kicks off festive season in Fort McMurray

December 6, 2017

AHS President and CEO Dr. Verna Yiu, left, and Northern Lights Health Foundation Executive Director Cindy Amerongen show off some of the many trees that were up for auction at this year’s Festival of Trees event in Fort McMurray. The event, the largest yearly fundraiser for the NLHF, broke their all-time record by raising $665,000.

Festival of Trees a huge success for Northern Lights Health Foundation

Story & Photo by Kirsten Goruk

FORT McMURRAY — AHS President and CEO Dr. Verna Yiu met with staff here and buoyed the Northern Lights Health Foundation (NLHF) during her Nov. 17 visit.

Her Friday began with a tour of the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre, where she met with staff in facilities and maintenance, capital projects, medical device reprocessing, ambulatory care, medicine, surgery and mental health.

Afterwards, she found herself transported to a Christmas-themed wonderland at the Festival of Trees Ladies Luncheon. Dr. Yiu delivered the keynote speech for the lunch and live auction, which raised $9,300 in a matter of hours. And it was just one part of a jam-packed weekend of foundation fundraising.

“I was so pleased and touched to have Dr. Yiu attend and be the keynote speaker for the Ladies Luncheon,” says Cindy Amerongen, the foundation’s executive director. “I had many conversations over the weekend with ladies who found her speech inspiring, and really put their work as female leaders and philanthropists into perspective,”
The Festival of Trees is the single largest fundraising effort every year for the NLHF. This season, they broke an all-time record when they raised $665,000 over the weekend. The event involves 150 sponsors, 250 volunteers and approximately 9,000 attendees.

“The community of Wood Buffalo remains known for its positive thinking, persistence and dedication to providing care close to home,” says Dr. Yiu.

“Visiting our sites and meeting with staff is one of my favourite parts of this job, and the excitement at the ladies luncheon was evident. AHS is grateful to have the support of such passionate healthcare advocates.”