Kindred Spirits

Kindred Spirits

Quality Health care is an essential part of what makes a community a place to put down roots and raise a family. We can never take our quality of life for granted and must continuously work together to maintain and enhance it. We are asking individuals, businesses, groups, schools and community organizations to join us and ‘Put Yourself in the Picture’.

The Diagnostic Imaging Campaign has raised almost $1.8 million. These funds have been used to purchase two new digital X-ray machines – one stationary and one portable – and two new digital ultrasound machines. The remaining $2.2 million being raised is to house and purchase a CT scanner. The provincial Ministry of Health and Long Term Care provides funds to operate hospitals but does not provide funding to replace or purchase any new or replacement capital equipment.  Almonte General Hospital counts 100 percent on funding from the AGH-FVM Foundation to ensure that staff has up to date equipment.

RHONDA & HER DAUGHTER BECKY LITTAUDiagnostic Imaging equipment is used in almost every aspect of health care, and the speed and accuracy of diagnostic testing can literally mean the difference between life and death.

Last year, approximately 15,000 patients were seen at AGH Emergency, 6,700 were seen by X-ray staff. The ultra sound is important for the Hospital’s thriving obstetrical program. These new machines offer better quality pictures and emit lower radiation.

Over the next few months I hope to create some excitement among women in the community, provide some history and facts about the services we are so lucky to have, and discuss how you can support the campaign.

Kindred Spirits will be a gathering of women who share a desire to find ways to contribute to the current campaign and to learn more about the ‘jewel’ we have in our community. At an upcoming event, we will share memories of how AGH has impacted our lives, and discuss ideas to encourage families to find different ways to raise funds and ‘put themselves in the picture.’

Our hope is that our Kindred Spirits will continue beyond the campaign to become an important force that will help to increase appreciation and knowledge of our hospital and expand community involvement and support.  Please email: if you’d like a personal invitation to our first event this fall.

Rhonda Virgin
Co-Chair, Put Yourself in the Picture Campaign

Local Insurer Gives Back With C.A.R.E Program

Local Insurer Gives Back With C.A.R.E Program

The Commonwell Donates $15K To Almonte General Hospital

The Commonwell Mutual Insurance Group, a home and auto insurance company focused on clients throughout Ontario, has announced a second major community donation, this time $15,000 to Almonte General Hospital and Fairview Manor Foundation. Funded through The Commonwell’s C.A.R.E (Create a Ripple Effect) program, the donation will assist with the payment of the two new ultrasound machines onsite at the Hospital since early in 2017.  This brings Commonwell’s total donation towards the new ultrasound machines to $40,000.

Back Left to Right: The Commonwell: Miki Paczek, Brand and Communications Manager, Tim Shauf, President and CEO, David Blodgett, Chief Strategy Officer, Allan Lowry, Director, Dwight Proudfoot, Director. Front Left to Right: Almonte Hospital Foundation: Louise Beckinsale, Development Co-ordinator The Commonwell: Theresa Messier, C.A.R.E. member and Jennifer Baziuk, VP of IT.

“This second gift from Commonwell brings us that much closer to having completely paid off the new ultrasound machines which cost $640,000,” said Hospital President and CEO Mary Wilson Trider.  “The Hospital had to go ahead and purchase these in 2017 because our existing machine was 10 years old and, with only one machine, our wait times were too long.  For the past year, our patients have been benefiting from two new digital machines, and our wait times are down from two months to two weeks.  Our patients have companies like Commonwell to thank for that.”

Almonte General Hospital (AGH) is a 52-bed emergency and acute care hospital serving the Mississippi Mills region as well as Arnprior, Carleton Place, Carp, West Ottawa, Perth and surrounding townships. This Commonwell C.A.R.E donation is directed toward the AGH FVM Foundation’s ‘Put Yourself in the Picture’ campaign with a goal of raising $4 million to purchase two new ultrasound machines, a new digital X-ray suite, a digital portable X-ray machine, and to acquire CT scan, which the Hospital does not currently have.  The total raised to date is approximately $1.7 million.

“Our Commonwell staff and brokers live in the communities that they serve, so giving back locally has always been very important to us all,” said Tim Shauf, President and CEO of the Commonwell Mutual Insurance Group. “We’re truly honoured to work with Almonte General Hospital and support them in continuing to provide exceptional medical care to the area.”

The Commonwell’s C.A.R.E (Create a Ripple Effect) program helps to fund vital charitable organizations in the Eastern Ontario communities that The Commonwell serves. Last year, the Commonwell donated over $575K to a variety of local organizations including hospitals, food banks, Big Brothers Big Sisters, youth services, Habitat for Humanity and palliative care.

About The Commonwell Mutual Insurance Group:

Established January 1st 2014, The Commonwell is a merger of three longstanding mutual insurance companies that has been built on more than a century of hands-on commitment to the local communities it serves. Since its founding three years ago, The Commonwell Mutual Insurance Group operates on the same historical premise of its three legacy companies – maintaining a focus on local presence and service that builds strong long-term relationships for the benefit of the greater community.

Irene Botham and Sharron Pottle, Volunteer Angels

Irene Botham and Sharron Pottle, Volunteer Angels

Congratulations to our two latest Guardian Angel recipients, Irene Botham and Sharron Pottle, awarded during our Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast on Tuesday, April 17 by Mary Wilson Trider, President and CEO.

Sharron, or ‘mama bear’ as she’s affectionately referred to by staff on the Continuing Complex Care unit nominated Sharron because she constantly goes out of her way to support not only her husband Eric, who lives on the unit, but also countless other residents, family and staff there as well.

Some of the ways she supports the unit include:

  • Decorating for special holidays and occasions
  • Helping serve food at meal and nutrition breaks
  • Folding towels
  • Sharing homemade, delicious baked goods
  • Doing the dishes
  • Bringing residents a warm blanket at night
  • Asking staff how they are doing when they are super busy

On top of all this, Sharron also volunteers in the Hospital gift shop and supports the Foundation by selling tickets and helping with events.

Irene has been a volunteer with Fairview Manor for over 20 years, having started after retiring from her job there as a receptionist. She has been the Secretary/Treasurer for the FVM Residents Council since the beginning. She then joined the Auxiliary attending their monthly meetings and helping out with a wide variety of activities including:

  • modelling in fashion shows
  • serving at parties
  • cooking and serving at special breakfasts,
  • operating the tuck shop cart,
  • decorating for Christmas
  • helping residents on shopping trips
  • taking her turn as the President of the Auxiliary.

Irene also helps out with our fundraising efforts, working at our bazaar and providing baking to sell as well as helping make our apple pies for that fundraiser.

These two special ladies enhance the quality of care received by our patients and residents and are truly Guardian Angels within our institution.

Dolly Toshack and Ruth Lowe, Volunteer Angels

Dolly Toshack and Ruth Lowe, Volunteer Angels

Dolly Toshack and Ruth Lowe first started volunteering at Fairview Manor over 40 years ago. Their husbands, Jack Toshack and Frank Lowe, used to volunteer with the Almonte Civitan Club. The men would set up and operate the bar during musical evenings at the Old Fairview Manor Dining Room. Dolly and Ruth would come to help by serving the drinks and the lunch.

During that time, Dolly and Ruth’s roles have increased. They joined the Fairview Manor Auxiliary approximately 26 years ago, and have been attending monthly meeting and helping out wherever they can. For instance, they became the Manor’s manicurists; twice a month they do the ladies’ nails. In the early days, Dolly would bring her granddaughters for the spa experience and Ruth would bring her grandson. They combined their helping here with babysitting too.

As the years have passed, their roles expanded even further to helping with many programs and events. They have modelled in the fashion shows, served at parties and teas, and pitched in in other ways where help was needed.

Both Dolly and Ruth have helped make the Auxiliary’s bazaars and apple pie days very successful because of their excellent baking, donations of pies and, of course, their date cookies too!

Dolly has served as President of the Fairview Manor Auxiliary and both dedicated volunteers remain actively involved and continue to be essential members of the Auxiliary team.

Dolly and Ruth, thank you for your 40 years of service.

Nancy Inwood, Reception & Scheduling at Fairview Manor Angel

Nancy Inwood, Reception & Scheduling at Fairview Manor Angel

Congratulations to Nancy Inwood who was presented with a Guardian Angel pin by her Fairview Manor colleagues.

“Nancy Inwood, a name synonymous with the steadiness of a rock and a disposition of calm. Whether at the start of the day or the end Nancy is the same friendly, kind pleasant face and voice that responds to a daylong barrage of requests, inquiries, and favors.

Nancy Inwood is our scheduling Clerk and no one could carry out that function with as much grace and dignity as she does…few would take on her responsibilities for any amount of compensation.

Nancy also functions as the first impression of our home to residents, families and visitors. Despite the never ending demands of scheduling, it is Nancy who meets and greets, assists, directs and comforts from her front door positioning …no one could be a better representative of what we want people to experience at Fairview Manor than Nancy Inwood

So from all of us Nancy…you are an Angel in our eyes and we want to make sure you know how much you mean to the many lives you interact with on any given day. You are a special lady and we thank you for you service.”