25th annual Miracle Weekend brings in $17.9 million for BC's kids

VANCOUVER, June 3, 2012 /CNW/ - BC Children's Hospital Foundation raised $17,939,688 for BC Children's Hospital during the 25th annual Miracle Weekend, hosted by Global BC TV on June 2-3, setting a new record. Miracle Weekend events have raised over $188 million for the hospital since the first Miracle Weekend was held in 1988. Overwaitea Food Group was recognized as the largest Miracle Weekend contributor, bringing in $2.005 million. The 27th annual ChildRun, also on June 3, brought in $1.08 million with the support of the Wilson Family, ChildRun's presenting sponsor.

"Miracle Weekend supporters have had a tremendous impact on the lives of hundreds of thousands of children over the past 25 years," said John Ridley, BC Children's Hospital Miracle Weekend chair. "Children who benefited from the support of donors 25 years ago are now adults, contributing to society in their own way. Today's donors are paying it forward to the next generation of BC's children."

Miracle Weekend is the culmination of fundraising efforts throughout the year by literally hundreds of diverse groups. Events include everything from school fundraisers to golf tournaments to black-tie galas. The hospital receives support from employee groups in financial services, retail, mining, technology, professional associations, construction and real estate, hospitality and restaurants, forestry and others, and members of Children's Hospital's employee family. Annual events, such as Jeans DayTM, Slo-Pitch, ChildRun, A World of Smiles Telethon on Shaw and the 98.5 The OCEAN (Victoria) radiothon contributed to the total.

The 11-hour Miracle Weekend telethon was broadcast on Global BC - ending with the announcement of the total at 5:30 pm on Sunday. The Chinese-Canadian telethon and radiothon, airing on Fairchild TV, CHMB AM1320 and Fairchild Radio AM1470 on June 2, contributed $1.026 million to the total. The retail sector, one of many industry groups participating, made the largest contribution from a business group in the 25-year history of Miracle Weekend: $5.2 million.

"Some of the donors who joined us this year have supported Miracle Weekend every year for 25 years," said Teri Nicholas, president and CEO of BC Children's Hospital Foundation. "Thousands of people from across BC and the Yukon continue to tell us that the health of our children remains a top priority in their eyes."

Donations to the Miracle Weekend are used to support the purchase of life-saving equipment, research into the treatment, prevention and cure of childhood diseases, recruitment and educational programs for caregivers, and programs in communities throughout the province.

About BC Children's Hospital BC Children's Hospital is the province's only full-service acute-care hospital dedicated to serving close to one million children living in BC and the Yukon. All children who are seriously ill or injured are referred to Children's Hospital and are either treated at the hospital facility in Vancouver or, with consultation from Children's specialists, in their home community. Last year, more than 81,000 children were treated at Children's Hospital. In 2011-12 BC Children's Hospital Foundation received donations from more than 140,000 people and had revenues of $83 million. Funds raised by the foundation are used to support BC Children's Hospital, Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children and the Child & Family Research Institute. For more information visit www.bcchf.ca and follow @BCCHF on Twitter.

Click here to download the full Ipsos Reid Media Release.