At a special Wednesday night meeting, Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare’s (HDGH) Board of Directors announced it will invest $100,000 to the local community poverty initiative ProsperUs. The grant, the local non-profit’s largest financial commitment to date, will help support its vision of a Windsor-Essex where every young person has the opportunity and support to succeed from cradle to career.

“Our role in this community extends beyond our hospital walls and requires true community partnerships. We know that growing up in poverty impacts a person’s physical and mental health, educational achievement, access to safe and affordable housing and proper nutrition,” said Brian Payne, Vice-Chair of HDGH’s Board of Directors. “At HDGH, we believe we are doing our part in helping to change the lives of generations to come.”

Specifically, the HDGH grant will go towards ensuring the voices of our residents – both youth and families – are heard. Lorraine Goddard, CEO of United Way Centraide Windsor-Essex and backbone organization to ProsperUs explained the grant will be invested in four ways.

“The grant received today will help support engagement in priority neighbourhoods, essential training and development workshops for our community, access to transportation, childcare and food for participants and lastly will compensate members for their contributions to ProsperUs in the form of stipends which will provide additional financial support to families experiencing poverty,” explained Goddard on Wednesday night.

Established in fall of 2018, ProsperUs is a collective of non-profit, government, healthcare, education, labour, business, and inspired residents with a shared vision of a prosperous Windsor-Essex.

In addition to its grant announcement, the meeting welcomed a presentation from members of HDGH’s Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC), who shared information on the council and also unveiled its new recruitment campaign.

“HDGH’s PFAC is a committed group of patients and family who encourage a shift in traditional healthcare culture from doing ‘to’ patients to doing ‘with’ patients,” explained chair Barb Masotti.  Masotti herself eagerly joined HDGH’s PFAC team in 2015 and was excited to share her voice after experiencing her own personal journey within the healthcare system. 

Today the council is heavily involved in many HDGH projects including quality improvement initiatives, policy reviews and has even begun fundraising for the hospital benevolent fund.

“We are at the point now where our council’s involvement has grown to the point where we need more members,” said PFAC’s staff lead and HDGH Patient Advocate Joanne Desjardins. “Our new campaign hopes to encourage this recruitment by showing the real faces of our PFAC group and their meaningful contribution to not only our hospital but to healthcare in general,” Desjardins explained.  

Those interested in becoming a member of HDGH PFAC are encouraged to visit for more information.


Bill Marra, VP, External Affairs, Executive Director, Changing Lives Together Foundation
Cell: 519-919-0033