Weeneebayko Foundation relaunches, starts 50/50 draw

·2 min read

The Weeneebayko Foundation is launching monthly a 50/50 draw to improve Indigenous healthcare in the region.

Ticket sales for the first draw will start May 3 at 11 a.m.

The foundation was formed in 1997 but it didn’t take off until earlier this month when the Weeneebayko Area Health Authority’s (WAHA) executive team decided to relaunch it, according to foundation co-ordinator Davender Malhi.

Through donations and draws, the foundation will raise money for medical equipment to improve healthcare up the coast so that people don’t have to travel to other communities like Timmins or Kingston, he said.

“The Weeneebayko Foundation is all about having optimum healthcare close to James and Hudson Bay. We don’t want our patients travelling all the way to Kingston, which is very, very far,” Malhi said. “It’s very stressful for the families and the patients to go all the way there leaving home. We want to provide all that to their own communities."

Malhi said the foundation was also relaunched in the memory of the late long-standing board member George Small Jr.

The first draw will close May 31 at midnight. The winner will be announced June 1.

All Ontario residents are welcome to participate and the winner may be required to travel to the coast to pick up the cheque.

The tickets can be bought for 3 for $5, 10 for $10 and 50 for $20.

There’s been a lot of interest from the community members who are excited about the draws, Malhi said.

“So many people have been buying tickets from Timmins or other communities. Our 50/50 is for our own communities. The more people are buying from here, the better chances to win,” he said. “They’re donating money to their own community. Even if they don’t win, all this money is going back to their community for their health and to help them bring healthcare close to home.”

For more information, visit wahafoundation.ca.

Dariya Baiguzhiyeva, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, TimminsToday.com