The BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund officially broke ground yesterday, Wednesday September 17th, on the new Burn Fund Centre.
The formal ceremony complete with a multi-Local Honour Guard and the Surrey Fire Fighters Pipe & Drum Band, was attended by several hundred guests including VIP speaking dignitaries Vancouver City Mayor Gregor Robertson; MLA Sam Sullivan; David Podmore, CEO Concert Properties; Randene Neill, Global News; Darlene Poole; Brady Tupper and Brynn Hawkins, Burn Survivors; Dr. Cindy Verchere, Head of Plastic Surgery BC Children’s Hospital; Dr. Anthony Papp, Head of Plastic Surgery at the BCPFF Burn, Trauma and Plastics Unit at VGH; Frances MacDougall, RN & creator of the ‘Too Hot for Tots!’ program. Michael Hurley, President; Ray Boucher, Vice President; Gord Ditchburn, Secretary; Erik Vogel, Director – all from BCPFF Burn Fund.
Construction begins this November and the Fire Fighters are still fundraising as another million dollars is still needed to complete the project.
About the Burn Fund Centre:
The Burn Fund Centre will provide eight short-term stay, free of charge, furnished suites in order to meet the critical shortfall in accommodation for burn and trauma patients and their family caregivers. The Centre will also offer supportive survivor programs and resources and retail space to help fund the ongoing operation of the building. Construction will begin in Fall 2014.
The province is experiencing a critical shortfall in accommodation for burn and trauma patients and their family caregivers. Patients’ health may be compromised when they have to return home sooner than medically advised or live in accommodations not suited to recovery from a burn or trauma.
Each year almost 700 children and adults from across the province are admitted to the BCPFF Burn, Plastics and Trauma Unit at Vancouver General Hospital and BC Children’s Hospital suffering serious trauma. Cases from outside the Lower Mainland make up 27% of cases, and 60% of those are paying for private sector accommodation for an average of eight weeks.
“Burn survivors need their loved ones close for support while hospitalized and require suitable accommodation while an outpatient and highly vulnerable to infection”, says Lisa Lacamell, Executive Director of the Burn Fund. “With the current accommodation shortfall its possible survivors’ recoveries might be compromised, but the new Burn Fund Centre will solve this crisis.”
Over 90% of the funds needed are already secured. This includes an extraordinary $1.3 million in pledges from professional Fire Fighters’ Locals around the province; a donation of land from the City of Vancouver; $750,000 in donated services from Concert Properties and a $4 million investment from the Province of British Columbia.
How can you help? Make a donation today. We are grateful for every donation we receive and you can help lift us a few more steps up the ladder to the best place for burn and trauma survivors.