Multi-million dollar donation solidifies Swift Current couples legacy


That’s the word that sums up the announcement made by the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation today.

The Foundation unveiled an estate donation of $4,021,634.05 from Rodney and Dorothy Elmgren. This colossal sum of money was donated on the condition that it be used for the Cypress Regional Hospital and to benefit the local community.

Chris Martens, executive director for the Foundation, is determined to honour those wishes.

“The generosity from the estate of Rodney and Dorothy Elmgren … [is something] we could have never dreamed of or expected in a million years,” said Martens. “Having this come our way in late 2023, really just struck a chord with everybody on the board of the Foundation. That someone has that kind of generosity, and sees the value in the work that the Foundation does.”

Martens unveiled this sum at the Cypress Regional Hospital this morning at 10 a.m. to a crowd of local representatives and members from the community.

He was joined by others from the Foundation, as well as the executor for the estate, Fran Schroh. She was a friend to the Elmgren’s, and their neighbour for 35 years.

“[The Foundation] did such a beautiful job,” said Schroh. “[The Elmgrens] were humble people. You would have never known that they had this kind of money. They were not people that went out and showed off. They were very humble.”

The money will be a point of many long discussions with the Saskatchewan Health Authority. The SHA will help the Foundation to allocate the money to projects that fit within the requirements set out by the estate of the Elmgrens. This will ensure their wishes to help their community even after their passing are honoured, and brought to fruition.

“This money is going to allow us to do things that we probably couldn’t collectively do in a 10 or 15 or even a 20-year time span,” said Martens. “This could really make a humongous difference for the Foundation and for the Cypress Regional Hospital.”

Martens is sure that the money will also end up benefitting the region as a whole. Having some of the money going towards careful and thought-out investments, using additional income from the returns, Martens hopes to see the Elmgrens legacy benefitting not only the immediate community of Swift Current and the Cypress Regional Hospital but the southwest of Saskatchewan as a whole. To be clear, this would not detract any amount from the capitol donated, only utilizing the growth it could generate.

“We cover 13 different areas, and we get requests from each and every one of them,” said Martens. “This money will allow us to actually potentially purchase more things at a quicker rate than we ever could before, and will allow for various other opportunities within the Foundation that we’re very excited to be able to take advantage of.”

This multi-million dollar windfall arrives at the Foundation on the eve of its 25th anniversary and is the largest in the organization’s quarter-century history.

The closest donation in size came close to a decade ago. Martens recalled it to be $1.3 million in total, making the Elmgren donation almost four times as large.

“To have this come at such a significant time for the Foundation, you couldn’t have scripted it any better,” said Martens. “It’s just unfathomable in the best possible way.”

Written by Hayden Michaels – Swift Current Online