Campbell River’s future home away from home’ (note image of home is preliminary and is subject to change)

The Children’s Health Foundation of Vancouver Island has launched a major fundraising campaign to build a ‘home away from home’ for outpatients and their families in Campbell River.

In an announcement on Thursday, the foundation launched a $7 million fundraiser to build a 10-bedroom home for families and pregnant women.

These outpatients will consist of people mainly from the west and northern regions of Vancouver Island who need a place to stay while accessing the adjacent North Island Hospital and nearby health care services.

Already, the project has received a massive $3 million donation from an anonymous benefactor.

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“I am so blown away by this incredibly generous gift that will help countless families from the North Island. We are eager to break ground with this development as we know the need is there and has been for a long time,” says Veronica Carroll, CEO at Children’s Health Foundation.

“Like the support shown by the community for Jeneece Place, we hope this large gift encourages others to give and match the $3 million gift to get us that much closer to our goal.”

The project’s lead architect Alan Lowe – who designed Jeneece Place and downtown Victoria’s mental health hub, Foundry Victoria – has also committed a sizeable contribution of $90,000 to the fundraiser.

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The success of Jeneece Place – a home away from home for families and outpatients in View Royal – was the inspiration behind the decision to build this home.

The Children’s Health Foundation plans to name it  Q̓ʷalayu House (pronounced kwuh-lie-you), which mixes both English and the traditional language of the home’s host community on the shared territories of the We Wai Kai and Wei Wai Kum First Nations.

“Island Health is proud to be a partner in this amazing project,” said Leah Hollins, board chair, Island Health.

“Q̓ʷalayu House will reduce the burden on families during trying times and the long-term land license granted by Island Health will ensure this project benefits the community for decades to come.”

Those who would like to contribute to the project can do so online at www.islandkidsfirst.com/donatecampbellriver/.