Connections – Raising the par

Posted on Jul 1, 2015 :: Connections
Andrew Schaick
Posted by , Insight on Business Staff Writer
Courtesy: Image Studios Inc./St. Elizabeth Foundation

Courtesy: Image Studios Inc./St. Elizabeth Foundation

The warm Wisconsin weather has some golf enthusiasts lacing up their golf shoes to make a difference for local benefit programs.

This year, St. Elizabeth Hospital’s Women’s Golf and Luncheon Benefit is aiming high for a goal that will support its palliative care program. Proceeds from the event continue to grow each year. Nearly $115,000 raised last year will pay for a new hair boutique within the hospital’s cancer center. Organizers decided to set the bar higher for 2015.

“Our goal this year is to raise $120,000 for the palliative care program we have here at St. Elizabeth’s,” says Trina Doxtator, development manager with St. Elizabeth’s Foundation. “I have no doubt that we will meet our goal, and it is all thanks to the community and local female business leaders. It’s inspiring to see that with the amount of things already on their plates, they can still pitch in and make this event such a success.”

The palliative care program at St. Elizabeth Hospital provides services to patients and families who are coping with a serious or life-threatening illness. It is a program designed to focus on reducing suffering and improving the quality of life.

Doxtator says it may sound like another term for hospice care, but it’s a much larger program.

“If someone gets a diagnosis of cancer or a life-threatening illness we are with them from diagnosis, all the way through treatment, and to the end,” she says. “Whether the end would be the end of treatment or end of life, we are there for them and the families to make sure everyone is taken care of.”

Doxtator says the proceeds will go towards more staffing, training and also tangible objects.

“We had two children that lost their grandparent and to help them realize what was going on, we provided each of them with a book that they could read and understand what was going on at their level,” Doxtator says. “So the proceeds go to little things like that, which make a big difference.”

Money raised during the Aug. 3 event stays local to fund the palliative care program at St. Elizabeth Hospital. For the past 23 years, the event has raised more than $1.2 million for the St. Elizabeth Hospital Foundation.

From court to green

A face widely recognized at courtside will step out on the golf course this summer. Bo Ryan, University of Wisconsin-Madison men’s basketball coach, is this year’s featured guest for the 30th annual U.S. Venture Open. The men’s basketball team played in the NCAA Championship game earlier this year.

Organizers anticipate his presence will help them meet a $3 million fundraising goal for 2015.

“We are extremely excited to have Bo Ryan as our guest of honor for this year’s U.S. Venture Open,” says Dawn Ruchala, manager of U.S. Venture Open. “Coach and his team have brought so much pride to our state and we are honored to have him join us to support the Fund for Basic Needs.”

The U.S. Venture Open is Northeast Wisconsin’s largest one-day charitable event dedicated to help in the fight against poverty. Ruchala said about 1,100 golfers will attend the dinner where Ryan will be speaking.

“We have a strong track record of bringing in top-notch celebrities for this event, and they have helped make this event such a success.” Ruchala says.

Whether events are hosted by a hospital foundation or a local company, a golf outing can sometimes mean a lot more than just a day away from the office.

“These events are what the community is all about,” Doxtator says. “We are fortunate to be within a community that thrives on helping others and there is a lot of love when they are involved.”