ST. MARYS – On June 1 and 2, local Jaffa Shriners will be conducting the organization's Annual Shrine Hospital Crusade, which specifically benefits their hospitals located in Erie and Philadelphia.
Shriners Hospitals for Children encompass a healthcare system of 22 facilities located in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, 19 of which specialize in orthopedic care and three burn hospitals. It is the largest pediatric subspecialty healthcare system in the world. The facilities specialize in treating youth under the age of 18 who suffer from orthopedic problems, severe burns, spinal injuries or cleft lip or palate.
Local Shriners will be collecting donations from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at both entrances of Walmart in Fox Township and at Save-A-Lot grocery store on Brusselles Street in St. Marys.
The purpose of the event is to inform the public throughout the state about the health services provided by the Shrine Hospitals.
"We are asking for your continued support to help meet the escalating budget of our Shriners Hospitals, which is currently at $809 million," said Jim Campbell of St. Marys, the tri-county hospital chairperson for Shriners. "Any donations will be greatly appreciated; however, a donation of $100 or more will entitle you to receive a 2012 hospital plaque number or a new beautifully engraved hospital plaque."
Each year Campbell, a long-time Shriner, works to coordinate the fundraiser along with other Shriners activities, including the collection of pop can tabs and accompanying local fifth grade students to the Shriners circus at the Jaffa Mosque in Altoona.
Fellow local Shriners Mike Sharrow and Clark Pearson are assisting with the hospital crusade fundraising this year.
Pick up a copy of the Friday, June 1, 2012 edition of The Ridgway Record for more.