Since 2012, an important event has been taking place each year to help raise money for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) located within Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon. Bloom – An Evening of Love brings together numerous businesses, individuals, organizations and more to help support the NICU and to provide funds to purchase equipment that they might not otherwise be able to afford.
This year, the event sold out in a record three days and the room of approximately 400 was eager to do their part to help such an incredible event. Held at the Saskatoon Inn on May 5th, the beautifully decorated gala saw a wide array of silent and live auction items, raffle prizes, and more. Included in the room was a special area, the Memory Table, where attendees could light a candle to “remember those born sleeping or taken too soon.”
Bloom Executive Directors Amy Novakovski and Tina Searcy, along with numerous committee members, work hard each year to improve upon the previous year and raise even more money for the NICU. “In three days everyone in this room came together to become this community that we see here this evening to give back to the NICU – to the unit that is equipped to handle the most complicated and urgent cases or premature and ill babies after birth and to the place where the staff with big hearts gave their all to the beautiful little warriors that earned their wings too soon in the NICU so they were able to have a little more time with their parents,” Novakovski said.
With funds raised throughout the years through Bloom fundraisers, the NICU was able to purchase 20 NICView cameras, which makes it possible for those unable to see the babies in person, to view them live via an electronic device. The purchase of this equipment made the Saskatoon NICU the first within the country to be able to provide this option for families.
Searcy took a moment to appreciate all of those who contribute to the success of the event and to acknowledge each committee member for the work that they put in to the amazing evening, noting that throughout each year, both her and Novakovski receive an abundance of calls from people looking to contribute to the cause. “Each level of support helps our organization maintain a low level of overhead allowing Bloom to donate so much more to the NICU,” Searcy said before noting how many people within the room have been impacted by the NICU on a person level, whether it be their own child, a family member or themselves that have received care. “It is a place that none of us want to spend our time, but are grateful that it is here if we need to.”
Dr. Givelichian of the NICU took to the stage to present a slideshow which included statistics from the NICU compared to others within the country and around the world. Providing data from 2014 and 2016 which was collected by the Canadian Neonatal Network, Dr. Givelichian was able to announce that Saskatchewan was number one within Canada for outcome within our NICU. Within moments after sharing the data, the audience erupted in applause. Continuing, the doctor shared statistics from around the world, which had Canada listed as number two after Switzerland, but followed up explaining that Switzerland does not handle the same gestation periods as Canada does, so adjusting the statistics to reflect that difference would make Canada number one in the world. “If we are number one in Canada, what would be the explanation? We are number one in the world,” Dr. Givelichian said.
For more information visit www.bloomnicu.com or follow them on Facebook and Instagram.