Firefighters from across Greater Victoria presented a $25,000 cheque to the Victoria Hospitals Foundation on Thursday. The funds will go towards a new patient monitor for sick and premature babies. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

Greater Victoria firefighters warm hearts with $25,000 cheque to help sick children

Funds will go towards new patient monitor in NICU at Victoria General Hospital

A new patient monitor for sick and premature babies is coming to Victoria General Hospital thanks to a $25,000 donation from a group of Greater Victoria firefighters on Thursday.

“For us, our contribution is a way to give back to the Island we love so much, to help our peers who provide critical care in our local hospital and to let children know that we are behind them – even in the most difficult of times,” said firefighter Brian Swanson of the Saanich Fire Department.

READ MORE: PHOTOS: Santa drops by Victoria Gen Hospital to give teddy bears to region’s sickest kids

On site to present a large cheque for the cause, members of the Professional Firefighters of Greater Victoria Community Foundation met some of the children currently in the pediatric unit at VGH.

Lily Lecinana, 10, who’s been fighting stage-four Burkitt lymphoma, gave them thank you drawings. She’ll be back at VGH soon for her six month check-up, after fighting the rare form of leukemia.

“I’ve gone back to school for the first time in a long time, almost a year,” said the Sooke girl. “These days I have more energy and I’m happy. I’m stronger and better … I’m back to skating, my favourite thing to do.”

The $25,000 will support funding a new monitor for life-saving care in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at VGH. More than 3,000 babies are born every year at the hospital.

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“We simply could not do our best work without putting this crucial equipment in the hands of our excellent care teams,” said Emma Carrick, NICU manager, Island Health. “We are so thankful to donors and community members like our firefighters for helping us provide the very best care to children that need it the most.”

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Firefighters Scott Miller from Esquimalt, left, Brian Swanson from Saanich, Tony LaCarte from Saanich, Jason Ahokas from Oak Bay, Frank Williams from Victoria and Trent Frenkel from Oak Bay presented a $25,000 cheque to the Victoria Hospital Foundation on Thursday. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

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