Swinging for a Cause: Raising Funds for healthcare & honouring esteemed former Fire Chief

Written by Ally Paige 

Photos by Hayden Michaels.

For the second year in a row, the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation and Swift Current Emergency Services honoured the late Fire Chief at the Second Annual Darren McClelland Memorial Charity Golf Classic.

The event, which took place on Friday at Elmwood Golf Course and Chinook Golf Course, served as a fundraiser for the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation, the Swift Current Fire Department, and the Swift Current EMS.

Previously known as the Charity Golf Classic, the charity event was renamed last year to honour McClelland, who avidly participated in the Charity Golf Classic.

“It means so much to the foundation to have this legacy a part of us,” stated Kris Johnson, who handles design, development, and administration for the Foundation. “Darren actually played in the tournament for emergency services and the Foundation tournament years prior, and it was a tournament that he loved to be a part of. You couldn’t ask for a better legacy to have attached to this golf tournament and the foundation.”

The proceeds are put towards supporting healthcare and emergency services in the area. This year, the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation’s part of the proceeds will be used to purchase a new fetal monitor for the Cypress Regional Hospital.

“We go out and sell sponsorships, team registrations, prize donations, all that type of thing, and once that all comes in, we do 20/20 split with EMS and the fire department so it’s a 60/40 with the Foundation,” Johnson explained. “Then our funds go towards equipment we’re fundraising for at this particular time, and then the EMS and fire department designate where they are donating their funds from the profits from the tournament.”

In total, over 220 golfers participated in the Second Annual Darren McClelland Memorial Charity Golf Classic. 25 teams competed at Chinook Golf Course, and 30 teams competed at Elmwood Golf Course.

man and woman smiling for the cameraKris Johnson and Fire Chief Ryan Hunter at the Second Annual Darren McClelland Memorial Charity Golf Classic.

Swift Current Fire Department’s Fire Chief, Ryan Hunter, gave the opening remarks on Friday.

“It was a very special time for me,” Hunter stated. “I worked with Darren my whole career and his whole career, and I miss him dearly. I think about him every day and to get a chance to do some opening remarks and do a little bit of a toast to Darren was certainly something that I’ll cherish.”

Hunter added that McClelland’s legacy says a lot about who he was as a person.

“Darren was such a community guy, whether it was hockey or baseball or golf or any kind of community event,” he elaborated. “He was just such a happy-go-lucky guy, he was always ready to lend a hand, just an absolutely excellent person all around.”

Johnson also added that due to how quickly tickets for the event sold out, they are looking at options to expand for next year.

The total amount raised by the event is still being tallied.

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Radiothon receives boost from Colts and SLC

Students at the Swift Current Comprehensive High School recently banded together to raise a significant amount of money for the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Health Care Foundation’s largest fundraiser.

The Swift Current Comp. Colts football team donated over $3,100 to the Swift Current-based non-profit organization on Saturday with proceeds coming from their October 6 game against the Estevan Elecs.

Part of the funds raised came from gate sales by the Colts, however, the school’s Student Leadership Council (SLC) played a pivotal role in finding other ways during gameday to increase the donation.

“We’re really proud of the student leaders for the event, who worked hard to pull it off after a couple of years of not really having many leadership opportunities in the school at all, then now to do this big fundraiser for such a big cause in the community,” said Mandy Herrick, an advisor with the SLC. “I think that it’s really helped their confidence and their sense of what they’re capable of.”


They set up a donation table, sold raffle tickets, had a canteen selling cotton candy and popcorn, and had a kiss the pig halftime show.

“We had three teachers volunteer,” she said. “People at the game and at the school before the game started put money into the teacher’s container that they wanted to kiss the pig.”

It was a close race on which faculty member had to perform the honours, with Mrs. Bailey’s container containing the highest amount of money.

The Pharmasave Radiothon for Healthcare will be live on the Eagle 94.1, Magic 97.1, CKSW 570, and CJSN 1490 on October 27 & 28 from 6 a.m. until 5 p.m. both days.

The funds raised at this year’s two-day event will be used to buy the Cypress Regional Hospital new technology to insert peripherally inserted central catheter and a blood assessment unit.

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Golf Draft Supports Renal Dialysis Unit

Golfing enthusiasts are encouraged to participate in the latest fundraiser for Healthcare as the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation and the Elmwood Golf & Country Club present the “Keeping Healthcare Strong Golf Draft”. All proceeds raised will assist with upgrades to the Renal Dialysis Unit at the Cypress Regional Hospital in Swift Current.

“The Renal Dialysis Unit at the Cypress Regional Hospital plays a vital role for numerous Southwest Saskatchewan residents,” says Jim Dekowny-Executive Director, Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation. “Having the most up to date dialysis equipment and chairs are in high demand for this busy department at the hospital and we’re asking our valued donors to assist with this worthy campaign”, Dekowny added.

Entry Cards for the “Keeping Healthcare Strong Golf Draft” are available from Urban Cellars, Elmwood Golf & Country Club and the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation(2051 Saskatchewan Drive) and will be accepted through August 1. Ticket prices are 1 for $30 or 3 for $70 and includes the following prizes:

1st Place $500, 2nd Place $300, 3rd Place $200 and will be awarded August 6-9 at the Elmwood Golf & Country Club. Thank-You to our Major Sponsors: Urban Cellars, Molson Coors and Choo-Foo Consulting.


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