Concordia Way 2018 Spring Issue - Page 8



Concordia Celebrates 90 Years
A legacy of care: Concordia
celebrates 90 years
A Purposeful Vision
It was 1927 on a cold New Year’s Eve in
Winnipeg. A small group of former students
of the Halbstadt Commercial School in Russia (now Ukraine) met for a social reunion.
The upheavals of the previous decade in the
former Soviet Union had brought people to
Canada to find a better life. This group of
new arrivals organized themselves as the
Concordia Society and discussed the possibility of sponsoring a community project.
The ethos of the Mennonite people has always
been community service, sharing, collaboration and giving back. Once in Canada, this
continued.
A Maternity Hospital
Jakob Kroeker, who served as an orderly
in the Bethania Institute at Alt-Kronsweide
in Russia, suggested that they establish a
maternity hospital in Winnipeg. Within
two months of establishing their purpose
and vision, the group had successfully raised
$1,000—enough to take concrete steps to
acquire a facility and hire people to run
the maternity home. Sara and Tina Koop
became the first staff at the new location:
291 Machray, in West Kildonan. By the end
of the year, over 28 babies were born in the
first Concordia.
In 1931, the hospital incorporated and
undertook expansions to care for medical
and surgical patients. Later that year, the site
at 720 Beverly Street was officially dedicated.
The current hospital on Concordia Avenue
8 The Concordia Way
Concordia nursing staff and other staff in May 1931.
concordiafoundation.ca
was built in 1974. The growth that followed
has continued to the present day, and has
been steady and strategic as it adapts to the
needs of the community.
A Firm Foundation
Fast forward to 1984, when the “Concordia
Hospital Foundation” was formed to raise
funds to support the hospital. One of the
first major donations came from Thomas
Sill, who later went on to form a charitable
foundation in Winnipeg, The Thomas Sill
Foundation. The hospital foundation raised
funds for cutting-edge equipment, including a CT scanner. Other major contributors
made it possible for Concordia to expand its
facilities in new directions, including community members, Martin Bergen, the DeFehr
Foundation, the Winnipeg Foundation, and
the many volunteers and auxiliary members
who tirelessly raised funds.
A Centre of Excellence
During the 90s, the concept of “centre of
excellence” took root, and Concordia began
the process in 1993 of establishing a centre
of excellence in orthopaedics headed by Dr.
Helmut Hubert. In 1994, the year it opened,
the Concordia Hip and Knee program performed 200 hip replacements. Today, our
skilled surgeons perform approximately
1,500 joint replacements per year. In 2001,
the program expanded to include a teaching
component. In 2002, Concordia became the
first community hospital in Canada to have
a Surgical Accredited Teaching program.
Spring 2018

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