The Co-operators donates $250,000 for emergency mental health care at Guelph General Hospital

Today Guelph General Hospital is celebrating a generous gift of $250,000 from The Co-operators to support better mental health and addictions care at the hospital. The donation supports the creation of The Co-operators Short Stay Assessment Unit, which will see emergency mental health care capacity increase by 50 per cent.

“In our organization we strive to improve awareness and reduce the stigma of mental illness and make our own workplace a conduit of good mental health for our staff and our communities,” says Rob Wesseling, President and CEO, The Co-operators. “Through the creation of The Co-operators Short Stay Assessment Unit at Guelph General Hospital we want to ensure that the Emergency Department has the space to provide dignity and the resources to ensure the care for anyone in our community when they need it most.”

The gift will support Together, We Care, the Foundation’s most urgent community fundraising project ever, of which Rob Wesseling is the current volunteer co-chair. In addition to increasing emergency mental health care capacity by 50 per cent, The Co-operators Short Stay Assessment Unit will improve wait times, access to care, privacy and dignity for patients and their families.

The generous donation was welcomed by hospital President and CEO, Marianne Walker. “We are extremely grateful to The Co-operators for their commitment to better mental health services in our community.” She explained “The number of patients coming to us for care related to mental health and addictions issues is increasing. With donor support we will relocate mental health and addictions care services within the Hospital and increase capacity in our short-stay assessment unit by 50 per cent. And we’ll be able to have adjacent space for community services, meaning more timely and coordinated care for those in crisis.”

This project and a related expansion of the Emergency Department are in the planning stages of the Ministry of Health’s capital approval process. Currently, the hospital team is working on the third step of the process which is a detailed look at programs and services, including a review of equipment, staff and space requirements.

The Co-operators made their first gift to support Guelph General Hospital almost 35 years ago. Since that time they have made 87 gifts totaling more than $650,000 to help the Hospital provide high quality care and experience to patients and families.

“We are incredibly grateful to be announcing this gift today,” commented The Foundation of Guelph General Hospital’s CEO Suzanne Bone. “The Co-operators is a philanthropic leader in our community and we are blessed by their support of Guelph General Hospital, our campaign, and this important project.”