Bringing the best of care,
close to home in the North

One Step Closer to Enhanced Cardiac Care in the North - Spirit Day Raises Over $70,000

Jun 2, 2017

After a one year hiatus, Spirit of the North’s annual radio fundraiser returned for a 12th year under the banner of Spirit Day.

With the stellar support of our broadcast partner the Jim Pattison Broadcast Group (101.3 The River, 99.3 The Drive and CKPG News) and nearly 70 volunteers, Prince George truly united in the spirit of giving throughout the 11 hour radio campaign. When all was said and done, we reached a final total of $70,756.30 as last minute donations trickled in online after the radio campaign signed off for the day!

Even Spirit Bear was on the phone!

All funds donated through Spirit Day will be directed toward funding for a suite of 4 ultrasounds with ECHO capabilities for cardiac diagnostics and emergency care at University Hospital of Northern BC. This was the initial kick off to an overall campaign valued at $500,000 – thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, supporters, volunteers and donors, Spirit Day was an incredible success!

Purchasing this suite of ultrasounds will have significant impacts on cardiac patients of all ages, reducing wait times and expanding access to ECHO testing. We will continue to direct funds to the Regional Cardiology Strategy, as our area of greatest need, until the full funding has been accomplished.

We are grateful to our event sponsors The Jim Pattison Broadcast Group (CKPG News, 101.3 The River and 99.3 the Drive), Northland Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, Rivers Edge Services, and the Auxiliary to UHNBC. We are also thankful to Tim Hortons at UHNBC, Karahi King Restaurant, and the Auxiliary Gift Shop at UHNBC for providing food and drinks for our volunteers and guests. We also sincerely appreciate those who shared their journey through cardiac related illness. Their stories made a big impact and we are grateful for the open and heartfelt way in which they relayed their messages.

“We truly appreciate the generous support of our sponsors, volunteers and our valued donors, who made Spirit Day such a wonderful success,” commented Judy Neiser, CEO for Spirt of the North. “Our community has once again shown that they give generously -- from the heart; their gifts of time, energy, and hard earned dollars will have a significant impact on cardiac patients in our community.”

For more information please contact Judy Neiser, CEO – Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation at 250-565-2515. To donate online, please visit our Canada Helps Page

Northbreast Passage Dragon Boat Society contributes to Breast Health Imaging Centre at UHNBC

May 29, 2017
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Sadly, few of us have been untouched by breast cancer. Joined by Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation Chair, Colleen Sparrow, these beautiful women in white from the Northbreast Passage Dragon Boat Society, have all been in the same boat. A huge thank you for their generous donation of $2,500 to the UHNBC Breast Health Imaging Centre, scheduled to open later this year.

“This centre with its state of the art equipment and support will make the frightening experience of a positive diagnosis a little bit easier and we are so pleased that it will be opening soon.” says Barbara Old, President of the Northbreast Dragon Boat Society.

This one stop centre will provide centralized, rapid-access care for patients in Prince George and surrounding communities that will consolidate breast screening through state of the art digital mammography diagnostics, ultrasound, and treatment all in one location, eliminating the need for multiple visits across different sites.

“We are thankful that those who have experienced this situation first hand are supportive of this fundraising effort,” says Judy Neiser, CEO Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation. “They are our best advocates for what changes were needed and how this approach supports a better standard of care for patients in the North.” 

For more information about our work in the North, or to donate, please visit, or call our office 250-565-2515

Wheelchairs in Motion at UHNBC

May 10, 2017
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 Photo Credit: T. Moore Photography

Through the generosity and hard work of many individuals and corporations a fleet of 62 rehabilitation wheelchairs have arrived at UHNBC.

This morning the entire fleet was brought out and launched by sponsors and supporters who collectively raised over $102,000 through campaigns such as September Casual, Bike-A-Thon sponsored by the Punjabi Canadian Senior Society, and Boogie with the Stars. All of these events were held between August and December 2016 in support of mobilizing patients at UHNBC.

“Working in collaboration with Northern Health this area of greatest need embraced the hearts of so many who value patient’s mobility. Understanding that the road to recovery often requires transition from bed to chair and then hopefully full mobility. This was a great cause and we were happy to get behind and support it.” – Colleen Sparrow, Board Chair, Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation.

After a multi-year project by the Occupational Therapy Department at UHNBC to evaluate patient needs and assess the quality of different wheelchairs, three different sizes of Helio Light wheelchairs were selected. These chairs were manufactured by an award-winning Canadian company and purchased through local supplier PG Surg-Med. They were ordered in a sunflower orange color that is unique to UHNBC so they can easily be spotted should they stray from the hospital. This truly was a partnership to ensure that input was provided from all who would utilize this equipment, and the community support was amazing.

“We are so happy to see that this fleet has arrived and will go into circulation soon. This is only made possible through the generosity of so many who support Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation. The real pat on the back is to the community, the donors, sponsors, supporters and those who believe in giving to see that healthcare in the North is advancing and meeting the needs of patients at UHNBC. – Judy Neiser,CEO, Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation.

For more information contact Judy Neiser, CEO, 250-565-2522

2017 Spring Grant to Northern Health

Mar 22, 2017
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Pictured L-R: Cathy Ulrich, CEO Northern Health; Charles Jago, Board Chair Northern Health; Jim Meier, Director Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation; Colleen Sparrow, Board Chair Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation

On behalf of our many generous donors, sponsors, and supporters who truly believe in better health outcomes for the North, Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation Staff and Board members were pleased to present a cheque in the amount of $880,285.05 to Northern Health Authority today.

With a mandate to fund equipment, education, and enhancements to healthcare in the service delivery area to UHNBC, the following is a list of items funded with these proceeds:



2 Angel Lifts UHNBC
2 Ceiling Lifts UHNBC
Basketball hoop, folding chairs and table UHNBC Nechako Treatment Centre
Vitals Machine UHNBC Eating Disorders Clinic
Holmium Laser UHNBC - Surgical
Optos OCT Scan System, Optical Tomography UHNBC Optical
Centrifuge UHNBC - Microbiology

Malditoff Mass Spectrometer

Broda Chair UHNBC - IMU
Alenti Hygiene Lifts UHNBC
Bio Med Freezer 17.0 Cubic Feet UHNBC

Emergency Social Services
Funding from Variety BC

Regional - Social Services
Custom Burn Garments Regional Burn Fund
Courtyard Revitalization Quesnel - Dunrovin
Billirubin Meter Prince Rupert Hospital
Blood Pressure Monitor Parkwood - Hemodialysis
Alcon- Centuriion Ozil Handpieces (7) Terrace - Mills Memorial
Rhapsody Bathing System Tub Kitimat General Hospital
Portable Ultrasound Fort St. James - Stuart Lake Hospital
Ultrasound Chair Fraser Lake Health Facility
Ceiling Lift Wrinch
Audiometer Dawson Creek - Audiometry


This brings the total granted in this fiscal year to just over $1.2 Million.

“No amount of words can express how thankful we are for the support we receive,” said Judy Neiser, CEO for the Spirit of the North. “We are so very grateful to our sponsors, donors and everyone who attends events and participates in fundraisers to ultimately strengthen healthcare in the North. We respect that donors have a choice in where they donate, and we are so thankful to the region for embracing the Spirit of the North in their philanthropic wishes. Giving really does make a difference.”

Working closely with the Auxiliary to UHNBC, they are responsible for contributing $160,755.31 of this amount. They are an amazing group that provides funding, but also so many volunteer services for patients at UHNBC. We are fortunate to work with many of the Auxiliaries in the region to bring the best of care closer to home in the North.

Moving forward this year there is no end to the wish list for equipment and enhancements to healthcare that is needed in all facilities. We are excited to close in on the final dollars required for the Breast Health Imaging Centre at UHNBC that was launched during the 2016 Festival of Trees. Additionally, we are launching a campaign that will see great changes in emergency response to cardiac patient’s needs with a Regional Cardiac Strategy campaign for $500,000 which is set to kick off the last week of May during our rebranded Radiothon that will take place on Spirit Day – June 1st. This will focus on the purchase of state of the art Echo-Ultrasounds for UHNBC.

For more information, or to donate funds to support healthcare in the North, please contact the Spirit of the North Foundation office at 250-565-2515


Prince George Fire Fighters Harley Davidson Raffle Winners Drawn

Mar 13, 2017
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The Prince George Fire Fighters 2017 Harley Davidson Raffle, in partnership with Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation, was a resounding success with all 3,500 tickets again sold prior to the Saturday, March 11 draw. The draw was completed at the Prince George Harley-Davidson shop on Vance Road at 4:30pm.


  • The 1st prize winner of the 2017 Harley Davidson Road King was Arnold La Rose of Smithers.
  • The 2nd prize winner was Tom McKeachie of Kamloops, winning a $500 Harley Davidson gift certificate.
  • The 3rd prize winner was Francis Alex of New Hazelton, winning a $250 Harley Davidson gift certificate.

All proceeds from the raffle are donated to the Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation and will be used to purchase a new Hamilton G5 Ventilator which will be used in several areas of the hospital, including the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, Intensive Care Unit, Emergency Department and Post Anesthetic Care Unit. These ventilator units are versatile instruments, capable of assisting the entire patient population, from neonate to adult, with a customized level of respiratory care.

This is the 20th successful Harley Davidson Raffle in the partnership between the fire department and the foundation, and the Spirit of the North is proud to announce that more than $850,000 has been raised through this annual fundraiser.

"The membership of the Prince George Firefighters IAFF local 1372 are a group dedicated to making our community a better place through both the on-duty work as well as off-duty fundraising activities. I would like to thank our members, management team, Costco wholesale, Canadian Tire and Harley Davidson of Prince George for their efforts and contributions. Also, a special thanks to the Spirit of the North, whose partnership with us on this event ensures its continued success and benefit to everyone in our community." – Mark Dorval, Prince George Fire Fighters Harley Davidson Raffle Committee Chair

“We are so pleased to have the opportunity to annually work closely with such prominent emergency response individuals in the community. Our partnership with the Prince George Fire Fighters Union Local 1372 has a long standing record of making a difference for equipment purchased in the region along with the work we collectively do to generate funds for burn survivor garments on an ongoing basis.” said Judy Neiser, CEO for Spirit of the North. “Without their dedication of time and energy for the project, along with the contribution of space form local retailers and our partnership with Harley Davidson of Prince George, we wouldn’t be able to see these exciting results. This is community spirit at its best.”

For further information please contact the Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation Office at 250.565.2515.

Vanderhoof Co-Op Night at the Spruce Kings a Win for St. John’s Hospital

Jan 16, 2017
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The Spruce Kings may have fallen in a 5-2 game to the Chilliwack Chiefs on Saturday night, but they pulled out a huge win for St. John’s Hospital in Vanderhoof.

Saturday’s game night sponsor was the Vanderhoof and Districts Co-op, and Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation was honoured to partner with them in an effort to raise $3,200 to fund a set of surgical instruments for use in Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) procedures at St. John’s Hospital.

“We at Vanderhoof and Districts Co-op believe that investing in our communities makes us stronger. We are proud to have been able to join with the Spruce Kings in supporting the Spirit of North Health Care Foundation to raise money to purchase surgical equipment for St. John Hospital. Thank you to everyone who came out to support this great cause.” – Allan Bieganski, General Manager, Vanderhoof and Districts Co-operative Association.

Fundraising started early in the evening as the Treasure Cove Casino generously donated $1,000 toward the goal, and FreFlyt Industries Inc. added $200. Many in the crowd purchased Spirit Bears to help toward the goal, and the Spruce Kings donated the proceeds of their 50/50 draw.

“Thanks to the kindness and goodwill of the Vanderhoof Co-op, the Spruce Kings and the fans, we are delighted to say that the equipment has been funded in full,” said Annette Stevens, Donor Relations Manager for Spirit of the North.

“We were so thrilled to be part of this fundraising event for Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation. It was great to see such a huge crowd out supporting this,” said Lu Verticchio, Business and Marketing Manager, Prince George Spruce Kings. “Thanks to Vanderhoof Co-op, Treasure Cove Casino, FreFlyt Industries Inc., and the fans … this benefits the entire region.”

For more information about our work in the North, or to donate, please visit, or call our office 250-565-2515

Thank you!

Dec 15, 2016
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Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation is proud to present Festival of Trees PG each year. This is our largest annual fundraising event and a wonderful opportunity to share what we do with the community. Whether you volunteered, donated, sponsored or visited, Thank YOU for being part of another great year!


New This Year at Festival of Trees!

Oct 17, 2016


The moment that many have been waiting for has finally arrived! We are excited to partner with local ticket provider Central Interior Tickets for sales of tickets to select Festival of Trees events!

Tickets for these events are available online:

  • The London Fashion Show
  • Medichair Senior's Luncheon
  • Scotiabank Senior's Tea
  • Northland Auto Group Family Brunch
  • TD Teddy Bear Breakfast 

Of course, you may still purchase your tickets by visiting us at the Spirit of the North office, or calling 250.565.2515!

New Event

Also new this year is a second dance. Our Dance and Dine Among the Pine event has become so popular with business groups that we have added a second dance to serve community members and groups of friends who want to celebrate the holiday together! This event is perfect for anyone who loves to two-step, waltz and reel.

On Saturday November 26 Dunkley Lumber presents a Holiday Dinner and Dance at Festival of Trees. The evening will feature a Christmas turkey dinner with all the trimmings, live music by local favourite Cariboo Thunder (a country-western dance band), door prizes and a dessert bar.

Tickets for the Dunkley Lumber Holiday Dinner and Dance are $50 (age 55+ pay $45) until November 1. After November 1 tickets are $55/$50.Tickets for this event are available at the Spirit of the North office, or by callng 250.565.2515

We hope to see you at the 23rd Annual Festival of Trees as we celebrate Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation's 25th birthday!

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Photo ©Gillene Gauthier – Freeze Frame Images 2016

Wine Lovers World Tour a Resounding Success!

Sep 16, 2016
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Saturday, September 10th was a special evening at the Coast Inn of the North as they held their annual Wine Lovers Dinner in support of Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation. We are thrilled to announce that the Wine Lovers World Tour was a resounding success! Chef Alden Kiland provided a six course culinary delight paired with carefully selected wines to a sold out crowd that opened their hearts and wallets to raise over $66,000 for healthcare in Northern BC.

The evening kicked off with Spanish-influenced tapas and a special sangria cocktail before launching into 6 courses of delectable food paired with wine from Italy, Argentina, Portugal, New Zealand and the Okanagan. The clafoutis dessert, a sweet, Yorkshire pudding-inspired shell filled with peaches and topped with vanilla gelato, was paired with Warm Apple Pie Wine from our local Northern Lights Estate Winery.

A live and silent auction were presented for the Wine Lovers guests thanks to several local businesses and artisans. For the first time at the Wine Lovers Dinner Fund An Item was included in the live auction and was well-received as guests enthusiastically raised their bid cards to pledge their support for the purchase of 12 Neopuff Infant Respirators for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at UHNBC. The Neopuff respirators are the standard of care recommended in all major infant resuscitation protocols because they provide the ability to control the air pressure being forced into an infant's lungs - a significant safety feature. The generosity of those attending handsomely surpassed $14,000 Fund an Item goal so we are happy to announce that additional funds received from the evening will go towards a dedicated ultrasound for UHNBC Mat / Child Centre of Excellence at UHNBC. 

“We are so proud of our relationship with Spirit of the North,” said Coast Inn of the North General Manager David McQuinn. “They make huge contributions to our quality of life and we love celebrating the work they do. While the event allows us to showcase the talents of our team, it is the PG community who humble us with their incredible generosity. We are honoured to host this event and we will continue the journey.”

“The evening was incredible”, said Judy Neiser, CEO for Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation. “The energy in the room was exciting and we are so thrilled with what this partnership for healthcare has done once again. The Coast Inn of the North, Jim Pattison Broadcast Group and the generosity of those who attended made for a perfect evening with great outcomes for healthcare in the North for our littlest patients.”

A raffle was held during the event for two prizes:

1st Prize: Round Trip Airfare for 2 people to Victoria, one night at the Coast Victoria Harbourside, and Dinner for 2 at the Blue Crab Seafood House was won by Richard George.

2nd Prize: Round Trip Airfare to Victoria for one person with Pacific Coastal Airlines was won by Mark Carrico.

For more information, or to donate, please contact the Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation Office by calling 250.565.2515.

Join Us for the Wine Lovers World Tour!

Sep 1, 2016
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The Coast Inn of the North presents their Annual Wine Lovers Dinner in support of Spirit of the North on Saturday, September 10, 2016. Join us for a special cocktail hour, followed by six courses of exceptional gourmet fare!

This year's very special "Wine Lovers World Tour" marks a departure from the tradition of featuring a single winery. Chef Alden Kiland has prepared a delightful menu from start to finish - tapas and cocktails to dessert and cheese - and artfully paired a range of wines from around the world with each course. Some offerings on the evening's wine list may be familiar, while others will be rare finds, including a very special wine from Argentina to be paired with the main course. Dessert will feature our very own local Northern Lights Estate Winery's Warm Apple Pie Wine.

The event will feature a live auction and silent auction and proceeds from the event will be used toward the purchase of 12 Neopuff Infant Resuscitators for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at University Hospital of Northern BC.

Each Neopuff bears a price tag of just over $1,300, and are the standard of care recommended in all major infant resuscitation protocols because they provide the ability to control the air pressure being forced into an infant's lungs. This control eliminates the risk of pneumothorax ("blown lungs") if too much air is forced into the lungs, which can occur with manual resuscitation efforts and can lead to death or permanent respiratory issues.

The NICU at UHNBC sees an average of 30 infants and premature babies each month, approximately 70% of whom will require some respiratory assistance at birth. Acquisition of the 12 Neopuff units will ensure that each room in the NICU is outfitted and every infant will have access to this gold standard of safe respiratory care.

Please join us for an exceptional evening of fine food and wine and help our tiniest patients get a safe start in life! Tickets are $150 and are available at the Spirit of the North office or the Coast Inn of the North.

A Proud Partnership With:

7th Annual Bike-A-Thon Happening on September 10!

Sep 1, 2016
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Bike-a-Thon Participants starting out for the 6th Annual Event

The 7th Annual Bike-A-Thon, sponsored by the Punjabi Canadian Senior Society, will take place on Saturday, September 10, 2016. All of the funds raised will go to the Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation to purchase healthcare equipment in our local hospital.

Starting at 8 am at the Guru Nanak Darbar Sikh Temple (4298 Davis Road), cyclists of all ages will bike all the way to Purden Lake where they will be treated with a picnic provided by the Punjabi Canadian Senior Society. The participants will then bike back to Prince George in the afternoon. Not only does this event raise funds for a great cause, but it is a great way to get out for a day of fun, fresh air and exercise.

For the seventh consecutive year, all proceeds will be directed to the Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation. In its first six years, the Bike-A-Thon has raised nearly $62,000 for Spirit of the North.

This year, money raised by the Bike-A-Thon will form a portion of the funds needed to replace a fleet of specialized wheelchairs for patients undergoing rehabilitation and therapies at UHNBC. The wheelchairs are customized to fit to each unique patient and are used daily in our hospital by individuals who are in recovery from strokes, traumas, and surgeries. 62 wheelchairs are required with a price tag of approximately $100,000.

"It is important that the money raised stays here locally to help, and that our event draws the community together," said Gurdeep Powar, the Bike-A-Thon Coordinator. "I would like to say special thanks to Dr. Mann. I couldn't do the event without him, and thank you to all of the participants who help us and work hard on this."

Everyone is welcome to participate in this event. If you wish to take part in this year’s Bike-a-thon or donate towards their efforts, please contact Gurdeep (Gordie) Powar at 250-552-3816.

Bike-A-Thon Participants and and Organizers present $22,242, the proceeds of the 6th Annual event, to Spirit of the North CEO Judy Neiser

USBC Students Hold Fundraiser

Jul 28, 2016
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Recently the USBC (University Synthetic Biology Club) at UNBC received funds raised through direct donations and funding through Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation.  “We’re closing the gap on what is required”, said coordinator Lon Kerr.  “We’re about half way there,” he said.

Earlier this year the students, who are raising money to attend an iGEM 2016 world class competition in Boston later this year, joined forces with Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation in their efforts to prove their theory which revolves around unlimited clean water.  They recognized that in some areas of the world clean drinking water is not always available.  Synthetic biology is a growing interdisciplinary field based around the application of programming life.  Developments in this field have led to benefits in healthcare, environmental and industrial fields.  Through the use of synthetic biology, their hope is to approach the issue of clean drinking water in northern BC.  Their project specifically centres around water as an invaluable resource and understanding that water becomes contaminated with leachate, heavy metals, and industrial run off that can pose a major health concern.  They plan to prove that reprogramming Escherichia coli to produce siderophores that will remove heavy metals from water.

Many individuals and corporate sponsors such as Integris Credit Union and Imperial Metals have pitched in to help this group meet their goal of $30,000 US to compete.  Recently over $18,000 was presented to the group which helps them register and order their supplies, and will help with immediate travel costs to get them on their way.   They are still actively raising additional funds for the additional costs to have their 10 member team represent UNBC, Prince George, and Canada in Boston in October.  On Friday, August 12th they will be having a  pub night at the Westwood Pub where proceeds will go directly to this cause.  Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the door or in advance by contacting Lon at (250) 552-5039.  Tickets are limited so advance purchase is recommended.

Anyone wishing to provide an outright donation to their project is encouraged to contact Lon or the Spirit of the North office at (250) 565-2515.  All donations will receive a charitable receipt and will be acknowledged in part as supporting their project.  A full copy of their proposal can also be obtained at that time.


We hope you see the healthcare value in clean drinking water and will support this educational initiative as well.

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Spirit of the North's 25th Annual General Meeting was held on June 18th, 2016 at the Coast Inn of the North.

St. John Hospital Receives Equipment for Physiotherapy Room

Jun 2, 2016