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                                                                                                                                                                    For Immediate Release

July 19, 2017



Al Shamal Shriners Support Maternal Child Health Project

- Enhanced Local Health Care Facilities Supports Infant Care -



Fort McMurray, Alberta – The Northern Lights Health Foundation is pleased to announce that the Al Shamal Shriners of Fort McMurray are donating $10,000 to advance infant care in our region.


The Northern Lights Regional Health Care facility provides maternity and infant care, and supports over 1000 births a year. Over the past few years, the Maternal/child ward of the hospital has seen a number of renewal projects to offer increased health services for both pre-term and post-delivery patients and the donation from the Al Shamal Shriners will augment the next series of infrastructure and service changes.

“Over the past few years we have added a Non Stress Test ward, have created a new waiting room for maternity visitors and family members, have added TeleHealth to connect our health centre to others in Alberta for consultations and training, and have upgraded the maternity rooms,” said Juanita Pilgrim, Manager of Maternity and Pediatrics. “Our next step is to create a Special Care Nursery to provide “Level 1” newborn care. This means that we can provide care for babies who are born as early as 35 weeks gestation, and who require extra supports including respiratory (breathing) support, intravenous (IV) therapy, and other types of specialized newborn care.”

The new nursery will be centrally located in the maternity ward and will also be used to stabilize infants who must be transferred to other hospitals for specialized care. Infants who are returning from those specialized care institutions may also need transition time back in the nursery prior to heading home.


“Our Nobles and our Shrine Clubs are very focused on infant and child health and we are always striving to ensure the best health outcomes possible. Shriners work locally, nationally, and internationally to raise funds and support children and families through health crisis” said Clarence Buchanan, President Al Shamal Shriners. “We are delighted to provide a $10,000 donation to the Northern Lights Health Foundation to assist the hospital with more specialized services in the Maternal/Child ward.”

About the Al Shamal Shriners

The Club was established in 1976 and has always had a community presence. Fund raising efforts have continued over all 20 years. In the early years many hours were spent in the local malls selling Christmas cakes, pudding and shortbread. Currently, fund raising includes the annual circus, the Ronald MacDonald/Shrine Golf Tournament and the Athabasca River Break-up raffle with funds supporting the Shriners Hospital for Children.

The Shriners Hospitals for Children are located throughout North America and specialize in Orthopedics, Burn Care, Spinal Cord Injury, and Cleft Lip and Palate, regardless of a family’s ability to pay.


About the Northern Lights Health Foundation


Established in 1985, the Northern Lights Health Foundation exists to provide funds to support health care priorities within the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo. The Health Foundation is proudly accredited under Imagine Canada’s Standards Program. For more information, visit






For more information, please contact:

Cristina Lucarelli

Communications and Marketing Officer

Northern Lights Health Foundation

Tel: 780-788-1324  Email:



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