Salon des Vins Vaudreuil-Soulanges raises funds for new hospital
PHOTO BY JAMES ARMSTRONG
President of the Fondation du Centre Hospitalier de Vaudreuil-Soulanges Denis Lapointe (left) and Honorary President of the 15th Edition of the Salon des Vins Vaudreuil-Soulanges Patrick Bousez were on-hand to welcome guests to the fundraising event held Wednesday, May 16.
The 15th Edition of the Annual Salon des Vins Vaudreuil-Soulanges, a major fundraiser for the Vaudreuil-Soulanges hospital, opened its doors on Wednesday, May 16.
“We have a nice day, lots of sunshine, people are arriving and they are smiling,” remarked Honorary President of the Salon des Vins Patrick Bousez as he and President of the Fondation du Centre hospitalier de Vaudreuil-Soulanges Denis Lapointe welcomed visitors to the event.
Support for local community
“We must remember that this is an event to raise money to help the community,” said Bousez, who also serves as Prefect for the Municipalité régionale de comté Vaudreuil-Soulanges (MRC-VS) and Mayor of Rivière-Beaudette.
“The Foundation provides a lot of support for a lunch program for children as well as specialized medical equipment for people that need it,” noted Bousez, referring to equipment not covered by the government healthcare plan. Bousez said it also provided financial support for victims of the exceptional 2017 spring floods in the region. The foundation also raises funds for the long-awaited Vaudreuil-Soulanges hospital. “It’s a little bit paradoxical,” said Bousez, “we have been hoping for a hospital and now we know it is coming.”
Volunteers essential to success
“This is the only fundraising event for the Hospital Foundation,” Lapointe told The Journal. “Each year it raises anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000. Last year, in 2017, it raised $85,000 and we expect about the same this year.” He described how the planning for the event begins in January with calls to confirm previous exhibitors and invitations to new ones. Both Bousez and Lapointe emphasized their appreciation for the many volunteers involved in making the event a success. With close to 250 attendees arriving for the midday opening and approximately another 600 expected during the evening hours, Lapointe described the Salon as a success. He noted that the Deputy for Vaudreuil Marie-Claude Nichols and the Deputy for Soulanges Lucie Charlebois were unable to attend because of their duties in Québec City. Charlebois was the Honorary President in 2015 as was Nichols in 2014.
Community support and commitment
“It’s a great opportunity for members of our community to come together and network and raise money for a very good cause,” said Member of Parliament for Vaudreuil-Soulanges Peter Schiefke. “It’s something we have supported over the years and we look forward to supporting it in the years to come.”
Saint Lazare Mayor Robert Grimaudo is also an enthusiastic supporter of the event. “The cause is fantastic and there’s a huge participation,” he said observing the increasing quantity of attendees. “It shows that people take the cause seriously, because they are all here,” he added. “I used to come to the Salon des Vins a long time before I became mayor because I like the event,” he said.
“We believe in the community and we believe in the hospital project,” said Director of Communications for Caisse Desjardins Vaudreuil-Soulanges, Richard Dubois.
“The hospital project will happen over 10 years. Meanwhile, we have to maintain our positive thinking. That is why, year after year, we are in partnership with the Salon des Vins Vaudreuil-Soulanges,” said Dubois. Besides providing the kiosks for the exhibitors, Desjardin also contributed $25,000, and purchased tickets for their staff to attend the event, according to Dubois.
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