The Stratford General Hospital Foundation took first place with the Culture of Philanthropy Award at the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy Canada’s 2013 conference in Halifax last week.
One of three award categories judged by the association, the award is especially satisfying for the foundation, says its executive director, Andrea Page.
“Successfully developing a culture of philanthropy within an organization like the hospital requires ‘buy in’ from everyone ... staff, physicians, and volunteers,” adds Page. “Once that philanthropic culture becomes engrained, it has tremendous power to reach beyond our walls, building and encouraging the kind of philanthropy that can – and has – transformed our hospital.”
The AHP Culture of Philanthropy award is presented to an individual that is pivotal in building a culture of philanthropy throughout their organization both internally and externally through partnerships, relationships, communications and a passion for the cause.
Rhonda Cunningham, chair of education for AHP, says when the association judged the foundation’s entry it was very clear to the panel that the organization was firing on all cylinders.
“The entry was full of evidence that all stakeholders, both within the organization and outside, understand they have a role to play in creating a successful philanthropy program, and indeed, they have embraced the hospital in their charitable plans.
“The end result is that the residents of Stratford and surrounding area have access to excellent medical equipment and facilities. Well done.”
That growing philanthropic culture has played a key role in the success of both the $3.8 million Making a Real Impact (MRI) campaign and the $20 Million Heart & Soul campaign.
The foundation also picked up third place honors in the Health Care Public Relations Association’s (HCPRA) Hygeia Award competition in the Special Purpose Communication category for its “penguin ads” supporting the MRI campaign.
Competition was fierce, according to Page, who adds, “we’re very proud of our penguin ads. They used humor, but their message was serious – reminding donors of how important an MRI was to Stratford and area.
“We also produced them using in- house talent and at minimal cost – something our donors and board expect.”
The foundation and Page have received numerous awards for fundraising and communications excellence in recent years. Within the past year, the foundation was recognized as the Outstanding Small Organization by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Golden Horseshoe Chapter; and tied for first place in the Stratford & District Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards in the Community Service category.