| Nov 11, 2010

Photo: (l-r) – Bud Clayton, chair - Pine Meadow Management Committee, Jim Wilson – Lion’s Club, Ernest Lapchinski, chair – building committee, Bonnie George - Pine Meadow Administrator, Jane Muston, chair - Land O’Lakes Community Services, Janice Powell, Treasurer, Land O’Lakes Community Services, and Bill Cox, Vice-Chair, Pine Meadow Management Committee.

When members of the management committee of Pine Meadow Nursing Home were through pinching themselves to make sure it was true that the long-awaited upgrade of the home had been approved by the Province of Ontario, they began to face a new challenge – how to raise at least $50,000 in a tiny rural area.

So, they started by calling some old friends, the Land O' Lakes Lions Club. As the club's treasurer, Jim Wilson, explained at the group's meeting on November 3, “This is our main charity; we have always had a soft spot for Pine Meadow.”

That soft spot has led the Lions to donate some hard cash in the past. When Pine Meadow was first being built, the Lions donated $100,000 over eight years to the building campaign, and provided a $250,000 surety as well. Thankfully the surety was never required.

“This time, we have decided to pledge $25,000 over five years to the new fundraising campaign,” said Wilson. The first donation is for $10,000, and a ceremonial cheque was presented at the meeting.

Representing Pine Meadow, Administrator Bonnie George said, “We are tremendously grateful at Pine Meadow for the support we have received from the Lions Club. It certainly is a kick start to our campaign.”

Jane Muston, the chairperson of Land O' Lakes Community Services, which runs Pine Meadow through a management committee, said “It's amazing that the Lions could make such a large contribution, coming from such a small area. It's a real tribute to the club's dedication to the community.”

The Land O' Lakes Lions raise money by running bingos, through a voluntary toll, and they cover their own costs by collecting the liquor and beer bottles that are dropped off at the waste sites and returning them to the beer store for the rebate.

The Pine Meadow Nursing Home upgrade will begin next spring. By the time it is completed the home will have attained the provincial class A standard for long-term care facilities. Although the number of residents in the home will only increase by four, to 64, the accommodations and comfort level at the home will be vastly improved.

After the announcement about the donation was made at the Lions Club, Lions member Ben Miedema recounted some of the experiences he has undergone as a person with polycystic kidney disease, a congenital condition that causes kidney failure.

Miedema spoke in order to underscore the need for a community project that Pine Meadow is also seeking to bring about, a dialysis clinic. “We met with officials at KGH to talk about the dialysis clinic,” said Bud Clayton, “and it was immediately clear that they will need some convincing, so we will have to keep on talking. Eventually, they will have to come around.”

Lion Ruth Peck pointed out that in order for the Land O' Lakes Lions to keep providing the same amount of service and funding support to the local community, they are going to need new members. Anyone interested in learning about or joining the Land O' Lakes Lions is encouraged to call Ruth at 613-336-8915.


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