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The search for a Super Community

Posted on 22/09/2009 12:00am

BC Children's Hospital launches fundraiser
Super Communities campaign encourages crazy, creative, fun methods
Mary Frances Hill, Vancouver Sun

Published: Tuesday, September 22, 2009
A klatch of friends, a town, a school, a workplace, a sports team: with a little push and some creativity and hard work, a group of like-minded people can spread a message that can affect change.

Hospital spokesman Stephen Forgacs and his team at the BC Children's' Hospital Foundation are relying on that notion to fuel their Super Communities campaign, a project to inspire groups of all stripes and communities to raise funds for the hospital by events, ingenuity and a collective passion.

With the help of Global TV, the Children's Hospital Foundation formally launched Super Communities campaign Monday, inviting groups across the country to use fun, creative ways to raise awareness about the hospital.

The entries can be crazy, creative, or fun, as simple as bake sales and car washes, or as elaborate as a festival, a community dance or fundraising walk.

Though raising money is at the core of the efforts, it's not just about soliciting for donations and watching the numbers roll in, according to Forgacs.

"We're not necessarily looking for the community that raises the most money," he said.

"The winning community will show spirit, an ability to mobilize people, and creativity and ingenuity in how they raise awareness."

It will also give British Columbians more opportunities to learn of the impact the hospital has on people and patients from smaller communities across B.C, said Forgacs.

Entries can be submitted at www.supercommunities.ca; the foundation is asking for photos or short videos and letters illustrating their efforts.

A panel of judges will look at creativity, originality, participation and fundraising success before Global TV and The Vancouver Sun profile the winning community on Oct. 26.

About 67 per cent of the children treated at BC Children's Hospital come from outside Metro Vancouver, with 2,200 a year coming from Vancouver Island alone, according to Forgacs.

© The Vancouver Sun 2009