Moose Jaw Health Foundation (MJHF) Executive Director Kelly McElree says people have been "so generous" to the Foundation, the fundraising arm of the Dr. F.H. Wigmore Regional hospital wanted to provide an opportunity for donors to not only give, but to potentially "win cash" themselves.
Monday morning the MJHF announced the launch of their "Cancer Care Raffle" - an initiative to raise money for a brand new ultrasound machine for the Wigmore hospital, to aid in the early detection of cancer.
The raffle has two components: a Cash Calendar and a 50/50 draw.
"We wanted to do something easy and innovative," said McElree in explaining the thought process behind the raffle.
He said the raffle will become an annual initative, and the MJHF will select a new piece of equipment to aid with cancer care each year.
"Since this (raffle) is our first, we thought we should do something for the early detection of cancer," said McElree of this year's equipment goal. "Ultrasound is a marvelous diagnostic tool."
It's also pricey, with a new machine running about "$200,000" said McElree. He said that if the raffle "sells out we'll make about $100,000."
However, McElree added that "one of the great things about raffles is it gets people talking and when people talk in Moose Jaw they take action. I know there will be others who will step up and help out with the rest of the cost. I have faith because for 31 years the Foundation has seen the generosity of the people of Moose Jaw."
Cancer survivor Barrie Vice also spoke at Monday's announcement. Vice, a Moose Javian (and Golden West Moose Jaw Program Manager) who battled Stage Four Hodgkin's Lymphoma in 2010, spoke glowingly about the care he received from local health care professionals during his treatment.
"I firmly believe we have to give them every tool we possibly can so there can be more stories, God willing, like my story."
The Cash Calendar includes 16 daily cash prizes of $500, 13 weekly prizes of $1,000 and a grand prize of $5,000.
The 50/50 draw, which gives half of the tickets proceeds to the winner and the other half to the charity, would be worth over $30,000 if all 10,000 tickets are sold.
Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at www.mjhf.org, or the Foundation office located in the Wigmore hospital. The draws will be made August 31, 2017.