Victoria woman Patty Pitts has won the Generosity of Spirit award for her contributions to ovarian cancer research. A full list of finalists for 2019 National Philanthropy Day was released Wednesday. (File Photo)

National Philanthropy Day reveals local winners, nominees

Finalists announced while Patty Pitts, Sisters of St. Ann among winners of yearly awards

Some of Victoria’s most generous and charitable people and organizations are recognized as finalists and winners for 2019 National Philanthropy Day.

One winner is Patty Pitts, who is receiving the Generosity of Spirit Award.

When Pitts’ aunt, Una Ferguson was dying, she encouraged her niece to travel the world. But Pitts had something else in mind. After losing two close friends to ovarian cancer, the Victoria woman established the the Carol Lalonde/Marlene Palmer Ovarian Cancer Research Fund with a $250,000 gift.

During an announcement last year, Pitts said learning about the survival rates, hard-to-detect symptoms and life-altering side effects of the disease led her to make the donation.

“I hope it will attract other donations so it grows to the point where [it can] make a big difference in the very expensive research required to offer more hope to women with ovarian cancer,” she said.

READ ALSO: B.C. woman donates $250,000 to ovarian cancer research for friends

Another award will go to the Sisters of St. Ann Pacific Northwest. The organization arrived in Victoria 161 years ago and has since opened 38 schools and 10 hospitals across B.C., the Yukon and Alaska, subsidizing the operations with their own funding. While only a handful of Sisters remain, the organization continues to make large donations in the community, including recent donations of $3.2 million to the Victoria Foundation, $2.5 million to Mount St. Mary’s Hospital Legacy Fund and $450,000 to Cool Aid for affordable housing.

The Sisters will receive the Generosity of Spirit Legacy Award.

READ ALSO: Sisters of St. Ann’s $450,000 donation will help Cool Aid build more housing on Gorge Rd.

Finalists have been announced for awards include the Outstanding Fundraising Volunteer Award, Outstanding Philanthropic Community Award, Corporate Responsibility Award and Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy Awards.

National Philanthropy Day was started by the Association of Fundraising Professionals in 1986 as a way to celebrate the work of charities and philanthropists around the world.

In Victoria the National Philanthropy Day celebration will be held Wednesday, Nov. 13 from 4-6:30 p.m. at the McPherson Playhouse.

For more information visit npdvictoria.com.

READ ALSO: Local leaders of all ages honoured at National Philanthropy Day event



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

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