More than $100K raised for Burnaby Hospital at Chinese festival

The Burnaby Hospital Foundation’s quest to fund a new $1.1-million CT scanner took another giant leap on Saturday night.

The foundation was the beneficiary of two large donations connected with the annual Burnaby Spring Festival Gala – a night of performances that mixed Chinese and Western influences leading up to Lunar New Year.

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Held at the Michael J. Fox theatre, nearly 200 cast members sang and danced to a sold-out crowd. Performances ranged from opera to traditional to hip-hop to rock. Some of the performers were very young children, while another was an experienced busker juggling machetes on top of a ladder.

The performers are members of the North America Artist Association and they didn’t disappoint – drawing a standing ovation from the crowd.

The association raised more than $3,600 from the event for the foundation. This money was added to a whopping donation of $100,000 from event sponsor Aoyuan International – a real estate development company that has several projects in Metro Vancouver, including a master-planned community near Brentwood Town Centre. The City of Burnaby was also an event sponsor.

“We like to partner with these kind of events to benefit the hospital,” said Kristy James, CEO of the hospital foundation. “We are very fortunate to benefit from such generosity.”

The event had a high-profile guest list, including Burnaby Councillor James Wang, Burnaby-New Westminster MP Peter Julian – who gave an entire speech in Mandarin, much to the crowd’s delight – Burnaby South Liberal candidate Karen Wang, Burnaby MLA Raj Chouhan, Burnaby Coun. Joe Keithley and federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, who is also running in Burnaby South.

Many in Burnaby’s Chinese-Canadian community have adopted the hospital foundation when it comes to raising money. The new Dragon Rotary Club of Burnaby has said the foundation will be a main beneficiary of fundraising efforts.

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