Bloom donation funds keep families connected with sick newborns

Bloom Foundation directors Tina Searcy (third from right, standing, and Amy Novakovski (second from right), along with their kids Dutch Novakovski and Charley Searcy (both of whom spent time in the Royal University Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) shortly after they were born), present a cheque in the amount of $56,100 to the staff of the NICU on Wednesday, June 28

A donation of $56,100 to the Royal University Hospital (RUH) Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) will help keep parents connected with their newborns receiving treatment at the facility.
The donation from the Bloom Foundation will be used to purchase specialized web cameras for several incubators in the 38-bed unit for gravely-ill premature and newborn babies. Parents of the newborns will be able to access live-stream images from the cameras through a privacy-protected phone app. The ‘Nicview’ cameras are designed to allow parents to monitor their babies, even when they’re not physically present at the hospital.
The NICU has already purchased ten of the Nicview cameras using funds from previous Bloom donations. The ten wireless cameras are slated to be installed in late July, and operational sometime in August, according to NICU Manager Adele Riehl. Continue reading “Bloom donation funds keep families connected with sick newborns”

‘Bloom’ thrilled to present $51,000 cheque to NICU

Charlie (left) and Dutch are graduates of NICU at RUH
Charlie (left) and Dutch are graduates of NICU at RUH

Two pint-sized ‘graduates’ of the NICU helped present a $51,000 cheque from ‘Bloom: An Evening of Love’ to the unit on Monday at Royal University Hospital (RUH). Their moms are co-event directors for ‘Bloom’ and were pleased to hand over the results of the fund raising efforts.

“We’re absolutely thrilled,” said Amy Novakovski,founder of Bloom. “We had always hoped to hit the $50,000 mark and to hit it in our fifth year is phenomenal. It’s very, very exciting.”
Novakovski launched Bloom after her son, Dutch, needed the care of NICU. “They gave me my baby boy. And now he’s doing wonderful.” Bloom is her way of giving back.
Co-event director Tina Searcy shares a similar experience. Her daugher Charlie was born two months premature. The emotions attached to Charlie’s perilous 12 days in NICU are still close to the surface for Searcy. She joined Bloom a year after it was launched.
“We exceeded our initial expectations by far,” said Searcy. “Over five years we’ve donated just over $140,000 to NICU in Saskatoon.”
Over 300 guests attended the May fund-raising gala at the Travelodge. The event has sold out each year and sought expanded venues each year. Searcy said sponsorship is key. “We grew in sponsorship from 14 sponsors last year to 27 this year.” Bloom has maintained and added some exciting new corporate sponsorships, and hopes to continue to grow the event.
RUH staff assembled to received the cheque. Adele Riehl, manager of nursing at RUH said the cheque for $51,000 was another great donation. “It’s wonderful, every year it’s more. I was shocked to hear how much they raised this year.”
Riehl said while basic equipment is covered in their budget, there are many enhancement needs for the unit that

Bloom: an Evening of Love raised $51,000 for NICU
Bloom: an Evening of Love raised $51,000 for NICU

are not covered. She said they’ve been working hard in the past couple of weeks, reviewing their equipment needs for the new Children’s Hospital
“We’ve been identifying things that we will be bringing with us and not bringing with us. We’re really going to be conscious about how we spend this money and make sure we get something that we’re going to be bringing with us to the new hospital. This is a huge piece of money so it will be great to have something that we will be able to bring with us, and that we’ll be able to say, ‘this is where we got it from’.”

Novakovski said Bloom may have a couple of ideas for allocating the funds based on what they’ve seen implemented in other NICU’s in Canada. “This year we’ll maybe make a suggestion for a couple of different things we’d like to see our NICU be able to house. Stay tuned.”


City police investigate shooting, two unrelated stolen vehicle pursuits

Saskatoon City Police were kept busy with a shooting as well as a couple of pursuits involving stolen cars.

The calls began at approximately 9:20 pm on Saturday, January 2, when traffic officers spotted a vehicle on Saskatoon’s east side which had been reported stolen to the Saskatoon Police Service on the morning of January 1. The officers attempted to stop the vehicle on the east end of 8th Street East but the vehicle immediately fled, leading police on a pursuit outside of city limits.  The vehicle left the roadway at the termination of Township Road 364/8th Street Extension and became stuck in the snow-covered field. Additional patrol officers arrived to assist as the suspect initially refused to exit the vehicle. However, the male suspect eventually complied as directed and was taken into custody.

The accused has been charged with Failing To Stop For Police, Possession Of Stolen Property Over $5,000 and another unrelated criminal charge.

Just after midnight on January 3, Saskatoon police officers reported to a shooting which occurred on the 300 block of Bottomley Avenue.
Police were called to the area after a 27-year-old man was discovered in the alleyway having suffered a gunshot wound to his abdomen and forearm. The caller then transported the victim to Royal University Hospital. Presently, the victim is reported to be in serious condition.

This does not appear to be a random incident and the investigation is ongoing.

At around the same time as the shooting on Bottomley Avenue, police were involved in a short criminal pursuit with a stolen vehicle and a 23-year-old man is now facing charges.

Shortly after midnight on January 3, patrol officers spotted a 2009 Honda Accord, which had been reported stolen on December 30, being driven in the Caswell Hill neighbourhood. When officers attempted to stop the vehicle, the driver instead drove off towards the Riversdale area, engaging police in a brief criminal pursuit. Other officers were able to deploy stop sticks and deflated one of the vehicle’s tires. Nonetheless, the pursuit was terminated in under four minutes. The vehicle was recovered within 30-minutes a few blocks away.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Saskatoon Police Service at 306-975-8300 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.