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Southlake names Cardiac Intensive Care Unit after Polo for Heart in Celebration of $1.2 Million in Donations

Friday June 16, 2023

NEWMARKET, ON – On Wednesday, May 17, 2023, Southlake unveiled the ‘Polo for Heart Cardiac Intensive Care Unit’ in celebration of the $1.2 million in cumulative donations raised by the annual event in support of Southlake’s Regional Cardiac Care Program.

A proud partner of Southlake since 2008, Polo for Heart has spent 15 years supporting the needs of the 10,000 cardiac patients who rely on the Regional Cardiac Care program each year. Funds raised through this event have helped make advanced cardiac care possible, through expansions and upgrades to services and state-of-the-art technology.

“We are so grateful to Polo for Heart for their ongoing and transformational support of cardiac care,” says Dr. Charles Peniston, Interim Physician Leader, Regional Cardiac Care Program, Southlake Regional Health Centre. “Through their investments, we have made game-changing upgrades at the hospital including the purchase of an MRI with advanced cardiac imaging capabilities as well as expansions of the Heart Rhythm Program which is nationally renowned.”

Founded in 1979, by Colonel Michael C. Sifton, Polo for Heart is now spearheaded by Colonel Sifton’s sons, Cliff, Mike, and Derek Sifton, along with the support of Mike Egan, Past-Chair Derek Watchorn and Executive Director for Polo for Heart, Karen White. Over $5.5 million dollars has been raised since the event began for heart and stroke related charities. In 2009, Polo for Heart committed to a $1 million pledge in support of Southlake’s Regional Cardiac Care Program. To date, over $1.2 million has been generously donated by the event.  The Sifton Family has also generously supported other Southlake events like the Gala, the annual Southlake Golf Tournament, as well as recent campaigns in support of Men’s Health, the Cancer Program and the Mental Health Program.

“Polo for Heart has been by our side as leading community partner for nearly 15 years,” says Jennifer Ritter, President and CEO, Southlake Foundation. “They have inspired thousands over that time to get involved and make donations that have ensured our communities have access to the advanced cardiac care they need, right here at Southlake. We are so grateful to them for their continued support of leading edge care, close to home.”

“It’s truly an honour to see the event, founded by my father, now being supported by a new young generation of Polo players and community members, celebrated in such a meaningful way,” said Cliff Sifton, who in addition to spearheading Polo for Heart, is a leadership volunteer on Southlake Foundation’s Philanthropy Cabinet and is a longstanding personal donor to numerous campaigns and corporate sponsor of the Nature’s Emporium Run for Southlake and the Southlake Golf Tournament. “We hope through this recognition, even more people will realize the impact we can have as a community on cardiac care for our friends, our family, and even ourselves.  We are so proud to support Southlake’s Regional Cardiac Care Program, and are excited to see what we can achieve at this year’s upcoming Polo for Heart event.”

The 2023 Polo for Heart event takes place June 22 and 24, 2023.  The event features some of the most exciting stadium polo in North America, as well as live and silent auctions, gourmet food and wines, half time entertainment shows, shopping, a children’s village (June 24 only) and more! It’s an amazing event for the whole family to attend.

Tickets for Polo for Heart as well as silent auction information can be found at: poloforheart.org

About Southlake Regional Health Centre Foundation

Since the inception of Southlake Foundation in 1980, more than $222 million has been raised in support of Southlake Regional Health Centre. Working with members of our communities, volunteers, our Southlake Family and our dedicated donors, Southlake Foundation will continue to support the most urgent needs of our hospital, including things like life-saving medical equipment, infrastructure upgrades and expansions, patient programs and staff education, all for the goal of providing leading edge care for patients and families, close to home. For more information visit: www.southlakefoundation.ca.

About Southlake Regional Health Centre

Southlake is building healthy communities through outstanding care, innovative partnerships, and amazing people. We deliver a wide range of healthcare services to the communities of northern York Region and southern Simcoe County. Our advanced regional programs include Cancer Care and Cardiac Care and serve a broader population across the northern GTA and into Simcoe-Muskoka.

Our team of 3500 staff, 580 physicians, 780 volunteers, 950 students and 90 Patient and Family Advisors are committed to creating an environment where the best experiences happen. As a recognition of our commitment to quality and patient safety, we have received the highest distinction of Exemplary Standing from Accreditation Canada.

With an annual operating budget of over $450 million, we care for a rapidly growing and aging population and have developed an exciting plan for new facilities to serve our communities into the future. A member of the Southlake Community Ontario Health Team, we are working with our partners to deliver integrated care to northern York Region and southern Simcoe County.

Southlake is supported by the communities we serve. To donate, please visit southlake.ca/foundation