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Inspiring the next generation of philanthropists

Jenn Rae
Thursday, February 23, 2017

Thousands of names line the wall of North York General Foundation’s brand new Inspiration Gallery donor wall. Every name tells a story – a personal reason for giving back to our hospital. 

The decision to create this new gallery was borne from a desire to build a more inspiring representation of our donors and our hospital. Incorporating our three previous donor walls, the Inspiration Gallery is located in the west hall way where the previous “Patrons” wall was located, recognizing cumulative lifetime giving of $10,000+ and our legacy giving.

In addition to celebrating your support, the Inspiration Gallery shares the stories of our patients and donors through special features, quotes and photos.  Stories like Sir Cyril and Lorna Woods’ – the philanthropists who brought the Inspiration Gallery to life:

Fiercely philanthropic, and traditionally private about the extent of their charitable giving, Sir Cyril and Lorna Woods made an exception – opting to speak openly about their support of North York General Hospital and the Inspiration Gallery. “We need to talk about philanthropy,” explains Sir Woods. “We need to encourage others to give.”

Giving back has always been a large part of Sir Woods’ life – although it wasn’t always easy. Emigrating from Ireland in his twenties, Sir Woods arrived in Toronto with just $100 in his pocket and a young family to support. Through hard work and perseverance (the motto emblazoned on the Woods family crest), Sir Woods started a successful business that gave him the ability to fuel his desire to give back. 

Sir Cyril and Lorna Woods made a leadership gift to North York General because of the role it plays in supporting the community that they live in. Their personal experiences at North York General have opened their eyes to the level of care in their own backyard. “There is friendliness inside these walls,” says Sir Woods. “It’s a very human hospital – and it’s up to each of us to support it.”

Next time you visit North York General, please take a moment to view the Inspiration Gallery. As you see all of the names that have helped make our hospital the iconic beacon of care that it is today, please know that each one of these supporters have changed the lives of many of our patients and their families. 

What inspires you to donate? We’d love to hear your story – send us an email at foundation@nygh.on.ca