Our Hospital, Our StoriesOur 2023 National Philanthropy Day Award Nominees

Posted on: Dec 12, 2023

National Philanthropy Day celebrates and recognizes individuals and organizations for their efforts to create positive change in the lives of others. The Royal Alexandra Hospital Foundation is excited to share more about our 2023 nominees.

It takes a community of generous people to move our health system forward. Donors are doing just that for the Royal Alexandra Hospital and its centres of excellence.

National Philanthropy Day, held every year on November 15th, provides an opportunity to thank our giving community. Every gift makes a difference, and the Royal Alexandra Hospital Foundation is deeply grateful to everyone who has donated to help us build better healthcare.

Every year, the Association of Fundraising Professionals Edmonton and Area Chapter hosts an awards ceremony for National Philanthropy Day, with local charities coming together to recognize those who are creating positive change in the lives of others in their community by donating time, talent, and financial support.

For 2023, our foundation named four award recipients, who are each responsible for life-changing contributions to the Royal Alexandra Hospital and the many areas of care it provides.

Alberta Blue Cross

The relationship between Alberta Blue Cross and our foundation runs deep, cemented through a vital partnership in 1999, that now touts many achievements—particularly around women’s health.

In collaboration with the Lois Hole Hospital Women’s Society, Alberta Blue Cross played an integral role in expanding a women’s health lecture series. Their support also bolstered the 2021 launch of the Alberta Women’s Health Foundation, driving essential research and funding. Their legacy is one of advancing women's health, fostering healthcare equity, and enhancing access.

Diane K. Buchanan

Diane’s unyielding commitment to enhancing healthcare in Alberta has taken various forms, from her role as a Foundation board member and event sponsor to a dedicated philanthropic donor. Most recently, Diane made a significant contribution to the Bridge Healing Transitional Accommodation Program, which aims to bridge the gap between emergency department visits and access to safe housing and community supports for those experiencing homelessness or at risk of housing insecurity. Diane was also involved in a pivotal campaign to procure a state-of-the-art PET/CT scanner, which significantly augmented the province’s PET/CT scanning capacity and capabilities toward diagnosing and treating many patients.

The range and depth of Diane's commitment to support both patients and healthcare providers was particularly evident during the challenging times of COVID-19. She personally financed the distribution of thousands of coffee gift cards to each staff member at the Royal Alex Hospital, showing her genuine concern for their well-being and morale.

MHCare Medical

After MHCare Medical principal Sam Mraiche’s elderly father received compassionate lifesaving care at the Royal Alex, the entire Mraiche family was impressed. MHCare Medical expressed their gratitude with a significant gift in 2021 toward respiratory care (like their father needed) and, after visiting several times and learning about various improvements the hospital hoped for, stepped up and made a second significant gift the very next year.

The new devices MHCare helped fund demonstrate the organization’s vision for health and care for its local community—giving care teams more confidence, improving education, and increasing efficiency for a hospital that serves a massive volume of patients each year.

The late William (Bill) K. Robbins

Support from Bill Robbins and his wife Mary Jo began with the Royal Alex’s operating suites but extended to every corner of the hospital’s campus—the Robbins Pavilion, Robbins Learning Centre and Lecture Theatre were all created and named for their contributions, and the Robbins Chapel, Walkway of Hope, and Belltower all stand as a reflection of Bill's enduring impact. Through their foundation, The Robbins Foundation Canada, Bill and Mary Jo continue to sustain healthcare facilities and programs located on-site and inspire others.

Beyond those nominated this year, the Royal Alexandra Hospital Foundation is grateful to everyone in our community of supporters who is helping to build better healthcare.

We would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate all National Philanthropy Day Award nominees.