Foundation at BVRMC making a difference

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Buena Vista Regional Medical Center Foundation Director Brad Strader at a recent meeting of the Hy-Noon Kiwanians encouraged members to consider the Buena Vista Regional Health Care Foundation as part of the members' philanthropic giving.

The Foundation, begun in 1984, serves as a charitable conduit for BVRMC. Since the Foundation began, Strader said people have recognized the need to help BVRMC provide quality health care to residents not only in Storm Lake but throughout the region.

"People are generous. They understand the need," Strader said.

Fortunately, in general, most people recognize health care as one of their top three philanthropic priorities, right behind churches and higher education. Unfortunately, though, there are reasons that people do not donate to the Foundation and other nonprofit organizations, Strader said.

First of all, people may not understand an organization or its needs. Secondly, people may not have been asked. And finally, they may simply want to make a difference.

"We're fortunate that overall, people are generous," Strader said.

Having started with the Foundation himself six years ago, Strader said one of his purposes is to let people know that the Foundation is there and also what BVRMC offers.

As an employer, BVRMC is the third or fourth largest in Storm Lake with 380 employees coming to the hospital from 46 communities.

Strader said a good reason to support the Foundation is that the donor "can take something that's good and make it better."

While BVRMC does receive county tax financial support, that amounts to $350,000, or just 1.5 percent of the hospital's annual operating budget. The other 98.5 percent comes from services and philanthropic support.

Strader thanked Kiwanians for their generous support for the Children's Miracle Network, 50 percent of which goes directly to help children with their expenses at BVRMC locally and the other 50 percent going to St. Luke's in Sioux City which has a state-of-the-art neonatal unit.

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