With over 20 years of service at Centenary Hospital and 12 years of experience as a Unit Coordinator in the Emergency Department, every day, Marlena sees firsthand the dire need for change within our hospitals.

So, when Marlena heard about the brand-new SHN ZOO DAY event supporting our Scarborough hospitals, she knew she had to make a team that represented staff in the Emergency Departments at all three sites – Centenary, Birchmount, and General. As a dedicated staff member for so long, Marlena has not seen much change within our hospitals. Seeing an opportunity, she decided that SHN ZOO DAY would be the perfect opportunity to have fun with her coworkers while raising money for the right cause.

“When the opportunity came up for this fundraiser, we knew we had to make a team,” says Emergency Department team captain Marlena.

Members of SHN’s Emergency Department Team

“We’re participating in this because our department one thousand percent needs to be rebuilt. Our volumes are quite high, we serve a lot of patients, and our square footage is small,” continues Marlena. “I thought it was a good opportunity for our staff to do something fun, do something important to all of us, and give back to the community we work in every single day.”

On June 11th, 2023, Scarborough Health Network (SHN) Foundation will host the first-ever SHN ZOO DAY – a chance to walk on the WILD side with family, friends, and colleagues! This event celebrates our love for Scarborough by bringing our community together at an iconic Scarborough landmark, The Toronto Zoo, to participate in a fun-filled fundraising walk. All funds raised will support the Love, Scarborough campaign and our Scarborough hospitals.

Two key priorities within the Love, Scarborough campaign are the Emergency Departments at our Birchmount and Centenary hospitals – and Marlena and her team want to do their part to help fundraise the local share. In Ontario, hospitals are responsible for 100% of new equipment costs and 10% of all new capital projects.

And to fulfil our local share, donations and community support are critical. SHN is committed to delivering exceptional quality care to everyone, and our health network is heavily relied upon by vulnerable patients who belong to one of the most diverse communities. However, despite our commitment to providing equitable healthcare close to home, our ability to do so has been greatly hindered through decades of being left behind.

This fact is another reason why Marlena is passionate about stepping up and bringing awareness to healthcare disparities. As an SHN Staff Member, she knows the importance of supporting the Foundation to help close the growing gap between aging facilities and compassionate care.

“Even as an employee coming to work, you want to know you have the best tools and have the best access to what your patients need,” says Marlena. “It makes me feel proud and happy to see that Scarborough is finally getting the recognition it deserves,” she continues.

Marlena has been an avid supporter of SHN Foundation and is happy to see organizations in our Scarborough community and beyond recognize the need and generously donate to SHN.

By stepping up for our Scarborough hospitals and participating in SHN ZOO DAY, Marlena is helping to improve our facilities, expand our capabilities, and allow us to offer more care to more people – with fewer barriers.

Want to join Marlena on June 11th at the Toronto Zoo in support of SHN? Visit SHNZOODAY.ca to register today!