Guelph Firefighters’ Benevolent Foundation
Drinking coffee at a shop not far from his home, Dave Aubrey, a 5-year veteran with Guelph’s firefighting team, talks about his fellow volunteers. He recently was voted into the position of Vice President of the Guelph Firefighters’ Benevolent Foundation (GFBF), a non-profit division of Firefighters’ Union Local 467. Dave explains that the organization was set up back in 1982 to raise funds for local charities—to give back to the community.
Over its lifetime, GFBF has raised over $1 Million to support those in need in Guelph and Wellington County. Fundraising ventures have included Muscular Dystrophy Boot Drives, the Joe Lacey Memorial Golf Tournament, the Leroy Bennett Memorial Bonspiel, Annual Guelph Firefighters vs. NHL Alumni Hockey Games, Firefighter Calendars, and comedy night gigs. These days, they concentrate on Guelph General Hospital and Groves Memorial Hospital in Fergus to purchase off-budget lifesaving medical equipment such as crash carts, C.T. scanners, dialysis machines, and equipment for the chemotherapy programs. Generally, GFBF members like to direct their funds to the emergency department, labour & delivery services, and children’s health. This year, there is a special emphasis on the renovations to take place in the GGH Special Care Nursery.
When asked why the hospital is the GFBF funding focus, Dave is clear. “Everybody uses the hospital’s services, and as first responders, we tend to find ourselves there often. Personally, our two beautiful daughters were born at GGH, and my wife had emergency surgery there recently. We owe a debt of gratitude to the place.”
Dave also shared the words of his Local 467 President, Regan Stocco. “Not only is it the industry that our members work in, but we believe that it is important to support the communities that we serve. Although there are a lot of great organizations in our area, it’s important for us to give to an organization that directly supports our members and their families. We are very proud of the work that Guelph General Hospital is doing, and we hope our contributions help them continue their great work.”
Since 2017, Guelph Firefighters Benevolent Foundation has donated over $83,000 to The Foundation of Guelph General Hospital to fund urgently needed equipment for the Family Birthing Unit. The GFBF deserves a huge vote of appreciation from us all!