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Philanthropists recognized for their commitment to WLMH Foundation

Posted on Thursday, December 1st, 2016 |

Philanthropy is defined as the love of humanity, the sense of caring, developing and enhancing what it means to be human. On November 15, National Philanthropy Day, West Lincoln Memorial Hospital Foundation (WLMHF) paid tribute to its loyal donors for sharing their time, talent and resources in support of West Lincoln Memorial Hospital.

“These remarkable individuals exemplify what it means to be a philanthropist. They have enhanced our hospital and community through their generosity,” said Pamela Ellens, Executive Director, WLMHF. “They are inspiring role models for us all, to give and to do whatever we can to support the high quality care provided at our Hospital.”

As part of the celebration, the Foundation recognized recipients of special awards in the categories of Hospital Family, Business and Individual Philanthropist of the Year.

“Although these awards recognize a few people, WLMH is most fortunate to be part of a very generous philanthropic community. This generosity directly supports the compassionate and skilled care provided by West Lincoln’s staff and physicians,” said Ellens. “Our collective efforts truly make a difference in our community.”

Philanthropist of the Year - Hospital Family: Laurie EllisLaurie ellis web

For Laurie Ellis, giving back has always been part of what defines her in striving to ‘be the change that you want to see in the world’. The recently retired registered nurse has been at the bedside providing care or managing acute medicine units at Hamilton Health Sciences and WLMH for 29 years.  However, Laurie’s commitment to her workplace extended beyond her professional commitment.

“I always felt it was my duty to support the Foundation as a donor and as an event volunteer, since those funds directly improve the care we provide for our community,”  said Ellis. “Using payroll deduction was a convenient way to support the hospital and helping at Foundation events helps to ensure their success.”

A supporter of many local and national charities, Laurie’s interests also include the humanitarian efforts of Amnesty International, participating in letter writing campaigns to support human rights globally.

Now in retirement, Laurie looks forward to continuing to be part of the hospital family through her support of the Foundation.

Business Philanthropist of the Year: Jethva Foundation - A.J. and Shilpa JethvaAj and shilpa jethva web

Growing up in Africa as a young boy, A.J. Jethva was raised to honour a Hindu saying, “Love all, serve all.”  The family immigrated to Canada and settled in Mississauga. Several years later in 1992, A.J. and his business partners decided to open a pharmacy in Grimsby. 

As the business grew, A.J. and his spouse, Shilpa never lost sight of their values, becoming active philanthropists and volunteers for community and humanitarian causes. They recently created the Jethva Foundation to build and grow their philanthropic interests, locally and abroad. West Lincoln Memorial Hospital Foundation is one of the grateful beneficiaries of the Jethvas’ financial and volunteer support.

"The West Lincoln Memorial Hospital Foundation is an important link between the community and our incredible hospital. It is our privilege to volunteer and support the Foundation to strengthen healthcare for West Niagara," said A.J. Jethva.

Individual Philanthropist of the Year: Roger and Diane BainRoger and diane bain web

For Roger and Diane Bain, local roots run as deep as their giving spirit. Roger, was born at WLMH and grew up on a Grimsby fruit farm and Diane was born and raised in St. Catharines where her parents ran a contracting company. Both grew up being taught the importance of doing what you can to help those in need.

The couple married and established an accounting firm in Grimsby.

“In accounting, you see a lot of large estate gifts. The option to give as you go along in life is a good thing to do and can be manageable for many people,” said Roger Bain. “We don’t have to wait until we’re gone; it feels good to give and we enjoy seeing our gifts put into action.”.

The Bains have been ‘giving as they go’ in the community to a number of organizations including West Lincoln Memorial Hospital Foundation. The Foundation’s annual Trees of Healthy Wishes campaign has a special place in the couple’s heart.

“Christmas angels have always given me the ‘warm fuzzies’. We have lost loved ones over the years, and it is during the holidays that we feel our loss the most,” said Diane Bain. “What better way to remember our loved ones, our angels above, than by an angel here on earth doing good?”

“Roger and I are pleased to see our angel gracing the hospital lawn with the others, welcoming those whose loved one is ill, or to welcome those bringing new life into our hospital.”

This holiday season, please support West Lincoln Memorial Hospital’s Trees of Healthy Wishes campaign to support our hospital’s needs and the great tradition of patient care in our community. To make a donation by phone or for more information, please call 905.945.WLMH (9564) or visit

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