The organization will match donations up to a maximum of $100,000
By Diego Flammini
During this holiday season, an Alberta ag organization is raising money for a local hospital.
Alberta Milk launched a holiday match campaign in support of the Alberta Children’s Hospital on Dec. 4.
Until Dec. 31, the organization will match any donations up to a maximum of $100,000.
The facility is the largest public hospital for children serving families in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and B.C.
One of those families is Crystal Olive’s family.
A second-generation dairy farmer from Silver Top Dairy near Fort Macleod, her 13-year-old son, Alex, has Ataxia-Telangiectasia, known as A-T.
The condition, also known as Louis-Bar syndrome, “is a degenerative hereditary neurological disease which affects several systems of the body”, according to Ataxia Canada.
AT affects one person for every 40,000 to 100,000 people worldwide.
“It causes progressive loss of muscle control, immune system issues and high rates of cancer,” Olive told Farms.com. “My son has been in a wheelchair since he was 10. He gets quite sick and has been at the children’s hospital quite a bit.”
This includes a three-week stay at the hospital in August.
Crystal Olive and Alex (Submitted photo).
The hospital’s immunology team primarily cares for Alex. And Olive sees up close the kind of care and work doctors and nurses do for families.
“He saw three different specialists during that time, and I’ve never seen three doctors work so hard for one kid,” she said. “Alex has some lung issues, so they had to do a lot of investigating and collaborating. And the nurses were absolutely spectacular.”
Olive’s story is only one of many.
And when talking to others it doesn’t take long to discover another family has spent time at the Alberta Children’s Hospital.
“If you’re from here, you or someone you know has had a sick kid at that hospital,” she said. “I feel so comfortable bringing my child there, I wouldn’t bring him anywhere else. This campaign is a great way to give back and say thank you to everyone at the hospital for the work they do for families with sick kids.”