Photos by Mike Maloney/London Community News
Tickets for London’s Dream Lottery go on sale today ( Mar. 8 ) and to help kickoff the event, representatives from the three hospital foundations — London Heath Sciences Foundation (LHSF), Children’s Health Foundation (CHF) and St. Joseph’s Health Care Foundation (SJHCF) — welcomed guest to a preview showing of one of the two homes and some of the prizes up for grabs in this year's draw.
The winner of this year’s Ultimate Dream Grand Prize will be able to choose between two fully furnished, professionally decorated homes — one in London that comes also with $200,000 or one in Grand Bend that comes with $400,000. If the winner would rather, they can also opt for a $1 million cash prize instead of either home.
In addition to the Ultimate Dream Grand Prize home, there is also 12 Grand Prizes (each with a cash alternative), along with $80,000 in cash and gift cards to be won in the final draw.
This is the 18th year for the Dream Lottery, which sees proceeds from the event shared between the three foundations to purchase equipment, fund research and education, as well as supporting enhanced patient care at their respective hospitals.
“This is a win-win for the community,” said Michelle Campbell, president and CEO of SJHCF. “All the money stays in the region. All the money supports front-line care. All of it benefits health care locally.”
Campbell went on to explain how the Dream Lottery is distinctive among several lotteries that have been out there across Canada for many years. By bringing the three foundations together and working as one in the lottery fundraising game, the continued success followed.
“I believe that this is not only because of the support we get from the region but also because of the partnership we have together,” she said.
Echoing Campbell’s words was LHSF President and CEO Dan Ross.
“It is unique in Ontario and Canada,” said Ross. “It really allows us to join together and really accomplish something on behalf of our community.”
Thanking everyone for their support through the last 17 years, CHF president and CEO Debbie Comuzzi has been through all but two of the Dream Lottery campaigns.
She stresses that the money raised — $20.5 million over those 17 years — doesn’t go into bricks and mortar, “this money goes directly into patient care at London Health Sciences Centre, at St. Joseph’s Health Care and at Children’s Hospital.”
A limited number of tickets are available starting at $50 each, three for $100, nine for $250 and 25 for $500. They can be purchased at the dream homes, by phone at 519-488-7100, participating Shoppers Drug Marts or online at www.dreamitwinit.ca.
A full list of prizes, deadlines, lottery details, rules and more can also be found on the Dream Lottery’s website.