Our Guardian Angels
The Almonte General Hospital team is comprised of over 500 dedicated healthcare professionals and support staff and a multitude of devoted volunteers. Many of you have had a member of the AGH team provide you, or a loved one, with extraordinary care or service in Almonte General Hospital, Fairview Manor or Lanark County Paramedic Service.
We cherish your stories and written notes of gratitude for the care, comfort and kindness provided by a member of the AGH team. While our staff members are grateful for your words of thanks, you asked us for a way to offer special acknowledgement to those outstanding medical staff, caregivers, support staff, co-workers and volunteers. We listened and created the Guardian Angel Program.
The Guardian Angel Program offers you the opportunity to recognize a member of the AGH team who has touched your life in a significant way.
To learn more about the Guardian Angel program contact the Foundation office at 256-2514 ext. 2296, firstname.lastname@example.org
Irene Botham and Sharron Pottle
Congratulations to our two latest Guardian Angel recipients, Irene Botham and Sharron Pottle, awarded during our Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast on Tuesday, April 17 by Mary Wilson Trider, President and CEO.
Sharron, or ‘mama bear’ as she’s affectionately referred to by staff on the Continuing Complex Care unit nominated Sharron because she constantly goes out of her way to support not only her husband Eric, who lives on the unit, but also countless other residents, family and staff there as well.
Some of the ways she supports the unit include:
· Decorating for special holidays and occasions
· Helping serve food at meal and nutrition breaks
· Folding towels
· Sharing homemade, delicious baked goods
· Doing the dishes
· Bringing residents a warm blanket at night
· Asking staff how they are doing when they are super busy
On top of all this, Sharron also volunteers in the Hospital gift shop and supports the Foundation by selling tickets and helping with events.
Irene has been a volunteer with Fairview Manor for over 20 years, having started after retiring from her job there as a receptionist. She has been the Secretary/Treasurer for the FVM Residents Council since the beginning. She then joined the Auxiliary attending their monthly meetings and helping out with a wide variety of activities including:
· modelling in fashion shows
· serving at parties
· cooking and serving at special breakfasts,
· operating the tuck shop cart,
· decorating for Christmas
· helping residents on shopping trips
· taking her turn as the President of the Auxiliary.
Irene also helps out with our fundraising efforts, working at our bazaar and providing baking to sell as well as helping make our apple pies for that fundraiser.
These two special ladies enhance the quality of care received by our patients and residents and are truly Guardian Angels within our institution.
Dolly Toshack and Ruth Lowe
Dolly Toshack and Ruth Lowe first started volunteering at Fairview Manor over 40 years ago. Their husbands, Jack Toshack and Frank Lowe, used to volunteer with the Almonte Civitan Club. The men would set up and operate the bar during musical evenings at the Old Fairview Manor Dining Room. Dolly and Ruth would come to help by serving the drinks and the lunch.
During that time, Dolly and Ruth’s roles have increased. They joined the Fairview Manor Auxiliary approximately 26 years ago, and have been attending monthly meeting and helping out wherever they can. For instance, they became the Manor’s manicurists; twice a month they do the ladies’ nails. In the early days, Dolly would bring her granddaughters for the spa experience and Ruth would bring her grandson. They combined their helping here with babysitting too.
As the years have passed, their roles expanded even further to helping with many programs and events. They have modelled in the fashion shows, served at parties and teas, and pitched in in other ways where help was needed.
Both Dolly and Ruth have helped make the Auxiliary’s bazaars and apple pie days very successful because of their excellent baking, donations of pies and, of course, their date cookies too!
Dolly has served as President of the Fairview Manor Auxiliary and both dedicated volunteers remain actively involved and continue to be essential members of the Auxiliary team.
Dolly and Ruth, thank you for your 40 years of service.
Nancy Inwood, Reception & Scheduling at Fairview Manor
Congratulations to Nancy Inwood who was presented with a Guardian Angel pin by her Fairview Manor colleagues.
“Nancy Inwood, a name synonymous with the steadiness of a rock and a disposition of calm. Whether at the start of the day or the end Nancy is the same friendly, kind pleasant face and voice that responds to a daylong barrage of requests, inquiries, and favors.
Nancy Inwood is our scheduling Clerk and no one could carry out that function with as much grace and dignity as she does…few would take on her responsibilities for any amount of compensation.
Nancy also functions as the first impression of our home to residents, families and visitors. Despite the never ending demands of scheduling, it is Nancy who meets and greets, assists, directs and comforts from her front door positioning …no one could be a better representative of what we want people to experience at Fairview Manor than Nancy Inwood
So from all of us Nancy…you are an Angel in our eyes and we want to make sure you know how much you mean to the many lives you interact with on any given day. You are a special lady and we thank you for you service.”
Emily Hine, Paramedic
"Emily is an incredible asset to the Lanark County Paramedic Service and also to the Almonte General Hospital family as she started her career in dietary and housekeeping!
Emily is phenomenal at her job as a paramedic and also an asset to her LCPS family promoting good mental health, breaking the silence of mental health and also helping with her own and helping others with PTSD. She’s also helping set up a pilot project along with her amazing coworkers to do home visits for the elderly to reduce ambulance calls and relieve emergency room visits. She will always be an angel in my own and others eyes" Hannah Munro
Maureen McLeod Fraser, RN
Manager OBS, ER and Perioperative Services
There are a million reasons why Maureen deserves an Angel Pin, but we‘ll list a few of the big ones: First and foremost, dedication to staff (working weekends, nights) – even after working a full day herself; all the time she’s put into scheduling; and all the extra works she has done to cover for other managers.
Maureen works tirelessly to keep Almonte General Hospital running smoothly – That’s why she’s known as The Queen of Everything. It’s a well-deserved title and we appreciate everything she has done to earn it. We love you, Maureen!
Kate Gahan and Donna Foster
Josh Smith PSW has worked on Rosamond for 2 years, and not a day goes by that the Patients, their families and his co-workers don’t appreciate the kind and compassionate care he provides. His enthusiasm for his job does not go unnoticed; his empathy towards the patients is evident in the ways the patients interact with him. He goes above and beyond to help everyone and is a key member of the Rosamond Team.
Josh’s friendly face and contagious smile is always a welcome sight on a busy day. He wears his heart on his sleeve and is very deserving of the Guardian Angel Award. Thank you for all that you do! - The Rehab Team.
Nicole Proulx, RN.
"Nicki is a caring and helpful nurse. She is ready to assist in every situation, always going an extra mile to help patients and colleagues alike. Nicki is a valued member of the AGH family and stands as an outstanding example of staff who support the hospital mission in every sense of the word."
Janet McGonigal, Physiotherapist
“Janet is a thorough and talented physio. Returning patients request her, when they have a new problem requiring physio, having received excellent care in the past. Just as she finds the key to inspiring her patients, she is an encouraging mentor to her colleagues. Janet is also an outstanding example of staff who support the hospital mission in every sense of the word."
"Diane is very hard working , meticulous, caring, warm and sensitive but at the same time very professional in her job."
SUSAN EASTMAN, Physiotherapist
“Susan has treated me for many years through knee, hip, and shoulder replacement. She motivates me and I get great results. No walkers, no canes and no limping. I am very privileged to have her and so are many other patients.” My doctor said. ’ You must have a very good Physiotherapist’.” Betty says of her Angel.
Director of Resident Care, Fairview Manor
There are not many hours in a day when Pam is not on duty. Her extensive experience is reflected in her daily dealings with everything from the ordinary to crisis’. Pam is someone to be counted on…even if it’s to jump in and change a dressing.
“Pam is always there to support us in every way and we, her Registered staff, want to thank her for her commitment and devotion to us and the residents.”
LISA MCPHAIL, CSR Technician
Lisa McPhail is known to many as our CSR tech who has worked at AGH for 33 years. She also dedicated many hours to the Staff Association for the last 14 years. Lisa has recently stepped down as Vice President and Louise and I would like to thank her for everything she has done to help make this organization a fun place to work. She was the common denominator from the last executive to the new one 3 years ago and her history and experience is much appreciated.
She has been loved by those who’s name has been pulled for the Pot of Gold and maybe not so much by those who have never won…including herself!!! So now that she isn’t managing this task, maybe she will win! We hope that Lisa will continue to be involved in Staff Association activities and help provide her guidance and expertise to our new Vice President. Thank you for all that you’ve done over the past 14 years!
RITA MUNRO, Volunteer
Rita has been a volunteer at the Physiotherapy Department for the last 15 years. Rita is very committed to her role in the Physiotherapy Department. She is meticulous in her work and trains other volunteers to be the same. She has excellent initiative and has been known to talk to laundry and housekeeping on our behalf always keeping us in the loop. Rita is very good with our patients at the same time being respectful of boundaries. She has a very good sense of infection control and always cleans our equipment after patient use and trains new volunteers to do the same. Rita will always step in if another volunteer has called in sick or is on vacation.
We love Rita and couldn’t imagine the Physio or the Hospital department without her.
HEATHER WHITE &
These two amazing women were nominated by Christina Glover who wrote;
"There were times during this GAIN Project where the pressure was high and energy levels dwindling. These two were always supportive and we never gave up as a team to make sure we could accomplish what seemed impossible at times. Heather selflessly put in many extra hours to help me with the HRCM testing, even on the weekend, and then she still had to complete her regular duties (and year end!). She never once complained, just simply asked, “how can I help you or what do you need me to do?” And Kate, well I don’t think there are enough words to describe how much Kate has sacrificed to this Project. But it’s the same with her, no matter how hard or stressful it became she always had a team attitude, stayed positive and on point. These two were the epitome of guardian angles for me throughout this project, I couldn’t have done my part so well without their support. They deserve to wear their pins proudly and know how awesome they are. Total Rock Stars!"
This is a second Angel Pin for Heather White. Congratulations to you both!
Executive Assistant to the President and CEO
The individual who nominated Tina wishes to remain anonymous as they feel their observations and appreciation for Tina is shared by many others.
Tina was seen lugging a heavy table and setting up a display for St. Patrick’s Day activities. She was laughing with fellow staff members as she went about her task. The person who nominated Tina said it was then that they realized how often they noticed Tina helping other staff/volunteers and how involved she is in staff activities. “Always Cheerful”
This is Tina's second Guardian Angel Pin.
Heather White, who has been working at AGH for over 31 years, is a dedicated, hardworking staff member who cares deeply about the Organization and the people she works with. She goes above and beyond her every day workload and is well liked by her peers. She is eagerly helpful when anyone needs advice or is looking for an answer to a question even if it is not her responsibility. She has a heart of gold.
Heather is a Guardian Angel to more people than she knows and her efforts are appreciated!
Heather has been a valued member of the Finance team since 1985
DR. GRAEME MCKILLOP
Mrs. Gordena Solowjew (93) and her daughter Nancy and daughter-in-law Cathie recently presented Dr. Graeme McKillop with a Guardian Angel pin as their way of thanking him for all the years he took such great care of Gordena. Dr. McKillop took over her care when Dr. King retired in the late 80s. He’s been with her through ups and downs and recently saw her through her transition to Country Haven. The two share a love for all things Scottish and both agreed that having a laugh along the way has been a big part of their relationship..
Congratulations Dr. McKillop!
DR. MATTHEW TIFFANY
Dr. Tiffany came to Almonte at the age of two. He attended St. Mary’s and Almonte High School, went to Montreal to do his under graduate studies in Anatomy and Cell Biology at McGill University, completed his medical studies in Grenada and New York and did his Residency in Long Island. Dr. Tiffany returned to Almonte and joined the Ottawa Valley Family Health Team and works in the Almonte General Hospital Emergency Department, assists in the Operating Room, and cares for hospital in-patients.
An irregular heartbeat brought Bert to the emergency room during wee hours of the morning in March. He was having a heart attack. It was a long uncertain night and when none of the usual protocols worked Dr. Tiffany’s experience gave him the answers that Bert is certain saved his life.
The following week, Bert stopped by Dr. Tiffany’s office to surprise him with a Guardian Angel pin. A quiet man, Bert offered his hand and the pin to Dr Tiffany. The look exchanged between the two said everything that needed saying.
Congratulations Dr. Tiffany!
Sheila has been a Full-time Recreation Therapist at Fairview Manor for the last 26 years. She can be described as outgoing, thoughtful and caring. She goes above and beyond every single day giving 110% of her time and energy in everything she does.
On behalf of All the Residents of FVM; thank you for your 26 years of dedication towards providing meaningful, entertaining recreation activities which has impacted everyone and improved their quality of life here at FVM. The Residents of Fairview Manor would like to recognize Sheila Lefebvre as their Guardian Angel.
MARY DAVIES, Physiotherapist
Connie Reitsma was determined to get better. A serious hamstring injury wasn’t going to keep her down for long so she decided to investigate physiotherapy to help with the healing process. As if the leg injury wasn’t bad enough, Connie had developed Benign Positional Paroxysmal Vertigo (BPPV). PPV is a common cause of dizziness. As fortune would have it, BPPV can also be treated by a physiotherapist – enter Mary Davies.
Mary has worked at the Physiotherapy Clinic for more than 20 years and has a vast amount of knowledge and experience accumulated during her career. Mary was assigned to work with Connie who couldn’t be happier with the results. “Mary has been wonderful in helping me get better. She’s been patient and helpful. I think she really knows does a wonderful job,” said Connie.
DR. HEATHER AMBRAMENKO
When the name Dr. Heather Ambramenko is mentioned, the words dedicated, amazing, fantastic and wonderful are sure to follow. It is no surprise to her co-workers that seven years after his wife's passing, Lionel Easton still sings Dr. Ambramenko's praises and presented her with a Guardian Angel pin for the care, guidance and support she offered the Easton's during his Audrey's illness. (see picture below)
Heather has been a valued member of the AGH-FVM since 1988
Congratulations Dr. Ambramenko!
HARRIET SOUDANT RN
"Just talking to her makes you feel healed" said Lionel Easton. Harriet is a person who stands out in the memory of Lionel as a compassionate, caring person who gave his very sick wife comfort in the Emergency room over 7 years ago. So much so that he surprised her with an Angel Pin to say thank you and to let her know that he still remembers what a difference she made that day.
Harriet (pictured left) has been a valued member of the AGH-FVM family since September 23, 1991.
HANNA MUNRO, Chef
“Hannah is a well-liked staff member who always has a positive attitude offering her help in any way she can. Hannah goes above and beyond her duties in the Kitchen and aims to please every patient, resident, visitor and staff member that comes through the cafeteria. Hannah strives to ensure top notch food is on the plates and always serves it with a smile. Her efficiency and organizational skills when helping out with special events and catering is an added bonus. Like the quote says “Good cooks never lack friends!” Thank you Hannah for being an all-around incredible member of the AGH-FVM team.”
Hanna has been a valued member of the AGH-FVM team since May 29, 2000
Executive Assistant to the President and CEO
Tina McLelland, Executive Assistant to the President and CEO was surprised with a Guardian Angel pin by a co-worker.
Tina is known as the go to person for anything administrative or well...golf. For one staff member Tina made the difference between a difficult first year and a smooth transition into a new position. Even though she holds a demanding role, Tina always shared information, engaged and included her co-worker in internal social activities, covered off duties and added her expertise to projects. Congratulations Tina!
Tina has been a valued member of the AGH-FVM team since August 2009.
Physiotherapy Receptionist, Recreation Therapist & Volunteer
Cheryl took on the job of Volunteer Gift Shop Manager in Oct 2014 she did so with her usual diplomacy and tact and brought her volunteers on board with the new ideas and has since transformed the shop into a place people like to visit and buy. People are now drawn to the shop by the new and exciting items Cheryl stocks there. In addition, the health foods Cheryl has added to the gift shop contributed towards AGH attaining a bronze rating.
The Gift Shop sales are the largest source of income for the Volunteer Services Committee (VSC) and have allowed the VSC to make significant donations to the AGH-FVM Foundation over the last two years.
The VSC believes Cheryl is most deserving of receiving a Guardian Angel pin, as she has almost single-handedly enabled the AGH Gift Shop to flourish and in turn therefore to enable us to reinvest in our hospital.
Cheryl Moore is also a valued staff member of the Day Hospital and Physiotherapy teams.
MARY DILLABAUGH, Volunteer
Mary Dillabaugh, Volunteer was award a Guardian Angel pin at the Volunteer Appreciation event - April 2015.
AGH-FVM President and CEO Mary Wilson Trider wanted to present a deserving volunteer with an Angel pin at the 2015 Volunteer Appreciation event in April. With 200 devoted volunteers, the choice was near impossible. Mary Dillabaugh was chosen to receive the Guardian Angel Pin.
Mary is a committed and reliable volunteer who makes that extra effort to make a difference in someone’s life and has the best interest of our organization at heart. For the last two years, Mary has been known as the "card shark" of the Day Hospital who is forgiven because of her ready smile and knack for making a great cup of coffee or tea. Mary can also be found out purchasing Christmas gifts for patients, decorating for the Holidays and pitching in with the project of the day.
Mary has been a committed Volunteer since 2012 and has recently joined the Volunteer Services Committee.
LINDA DUNCAN, Lead Hand
Linda Duncan, Lead Hand. Linda was nominated by an anonymous donor who is also a co-worker. Linda’s colleague describes her as, “A knowledgeable and fair boss who has always been driven. She is hard-working, always on top of things.” President and CEO Mary Wilson Trider presented Linda with her Guardian Angel pin in December 2014.
Linda has been a valued member of the AGH-FVM team since June 17, 1977.
SHELLY BRANJIE, Ward Clerk
Shelley Branje, Ward Clerk. Shelly was nominated by Jack, the husband of a former patient. Jack had many hours over the last three months of his wife life to watch the comings and goings of the staff. While he says that he found there to be many remarkable members of the team, Shelley stood out. “She was the person everyone turned to. She always had the answers or found them out. She arranged everything and did it with a smile.” Jack said. “And that’s why she is my Guardian Angel.” Jack was thrilled to present Shelley with her pin in December 2014.
Shelley has been a valued member of the AGH-FVM team since Oct 8, 1989.