With the COVID-19 global pandemic forcing the healthcare system to adapt quickly, the Mierins family decided they needed to act.
Over the years, the Mierins Family Foundation has been a generous supporter of The Ottawa Hospital. Lisa Mierins says her family experienced firsthand the exceptional care of the hospital when both of her parents required hospitalization, including her father who was on life support twice in the last five years. “Both the Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit teams were unbelievable. They took good care of all of us, and took us by the hand at a very difficult time.”
That admiration for the care their family received and a desire to improve experiences for all patients during the current pandemic made Lisa and her family want to step forward to create a match donation in support of The Ottawa Hospital’s COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund. “We have close ties to the hospital because of the way we were treated, like family. They’ve been amazing to us so we wanted to do something in return for them.”
“We realized we needed to do something — we needed to be proactive for our community.” – Lisa Mierins
In return, the Mierins Family Foundation will donate up to $250,000 in a match donation to inspire others in the community to come together and give back. Lisa says their family came to this decision together. “We’ve been very blessed in our lives and this is our way to give back to the community at large. We feel this is the most important need right now.”
The Mierins Family Foundation was created two years ago. Lisa and her brother, Arnie Mierins, are co-presidents. The team also includes her sister-in-law, Victoria Mierins, and one of Lisa’s sons, Patrick Bourque. Philanthropy is a core value of the Mierins family with their strong desire to support their community.
The Mierins family hopes their match donation will rally and inspire others. They would love to see their family’s $250,000 transformed into a half a million dollars for the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund.
The fund was created to support urgent priorities to help patients and staff directly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic by:
- helping researchers as they ramp up their work to contribute to the global fight against COVID-19
- developing innovative treatments
- supporting front-line medical teams
- purchasing equipment and supplies
- contributing to the care and comfort of patients
Like many, the Mierins family is deeply concerned about what’s going on in the world, and that’s why they stepped forward. “We just felt we needed to help the front-line workers. They are putting themselves out there, making a difference, and saving lives. We decided, as a family, that’s what we wanted to do. We wanted to help and encourage other people to help in any way they can.”
“We have close ties to the hospital because of the way we were treated, like family. They’ve been amazing to us so we wanted to do something in return for them.” – Lisa Mierins
Double your gift today
Lisa adds it’s an opportunity for community members to double their donation and have a bigger impact—no matter what the size of gift. “It can be a $10 donation, which then becomes a $20 donation.” It’s about being able to have an impact at a time when the public is told to stay home, but healthcare workers are going to the frontlines each day—this is a way to give back and say thank you. “I just think about all the doctors and nurses who have given up so much of their time — their dedication is unbelievable,” says Lisa.
For the Mierins Family Foundation, Lisa says doing nothing wasn’t an option anymore. Everybody has a part to play. “We realized we needed to do something — we needed to be proactive for our community.”
Matching gift update
We are happy to report that the Nanji Family Foundation from Toronto have also been inspired to donate a matching gift to The Ottawa Hospital. Their generous offer to match every donation to the COVID-19 Emergency Response fund up to $100,000 will be coupled with the Mierins Family Foundation’s gift to bring the total available for matching to $350,000!
Thank you to the Nanji family for their leadership and for inspiring others to give and double their impact.
The Ottawa Hospital is a leading academic health, research, and learning hospital proudly affiliated with the University of Ottawa.