Laughter is the Best Medicine: Seinfeld and Arnett Help Raise Three Million for the Toronto East General Hospital
Surprise Announcement of One Million Donation From the Jain Family
buoyed fundraising at the Comedy Gala that drew over 1500 guests
TORONTO, April 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ – The bar for charity galas was raised on
Thursday, April 12 as Toronto East General Hospital (TEGH)–one of North
America’s leading community teaching hospitals–tapped Toronto’s funny
bone for its first annual “Laughter is the Best Medicine” Comedy Gala,
raising three million dollars. Emmy and Golden Globe award winner Jerry
Seinfeld headlined the event, with Celebrity Will Arnett (Up All Night and Arrested Development) as Master of Ceremonies (MC), offering over 1500 guests a heavy dose
of laughter at the Allstream Centre.
Arnett opened the evening with his sardonic wit. It was then the
Just-For-Laughs-circuit regular, Derek Edwards, who had the crowd in
stitches. Jerry Seinfeld closed out the evening, delivering his
hallmark humour to rock the house with laughter for a full hour.
“I always love coming Toronto, where there’s no shortage of humour. It
was a true pleasure to be able to come north this time to support such
a worthy charity as the Toronto East General Hospital. They do
fantastic work,” commented Jerry Seinfeld.
“What better way to return home to Toronto than to support a hospital
that has meant so much to my family. It was a real thrill to be part of
the inaugural ‘Laughter Is The Best Medicine’ for the Toronto East
General,” said Will Arnett. By the end of the Gala, Arnett was bestowed
with the title of Toronto East General’s first-ever “Honourary Doctor.”
“This was a first-of-its-kind event for the hospital, and our star
guests certainly proved that laughter is indeed the best medicine. It
was a memorable evening for all,”noted Gala Chair Michael Geddes.
Among the veritable who’s-who of guests at the black-tie event was Amy
Poehler, Will Arnett’s wife, there as the Arnett family was honoured
for their long-term support of the hospital.
A surprise announcement of a one-million-dollar donation from the Jain
Family was a big highlight of the event, contributing to the impressive
funds total to boost TEGH’s capital redevelopment campaign. ”We want to
thank Dr. Simone and his team for the timely delivery of exemplary
emergent surgical care at a community hospital that is normally
expected at major university centres. My parents wanted to show their
appreciation by giving a small gift to the hospital and hope that it
will go a long way in raising awareness of the talent that we have
within our community,” stated Ajay Jain.
“We exceeded our greatest expectations with this gala, raising three
million dollars, thanks to the support of over 1500 guests,” said TEGH
Board Chair, Michael Burns. “It was an unforgettable night, with a very
positive surge to our capital campaign.”
The TEGH’s $211 million-dollar redevelopment project will see the
establishment of a new Ken and Marilyn Thomson Patient Care Centre-a
landmark health care facility, so named thanks to a five million dollar
commitment from Peter and Diana Thomson-that will significantly enhance
access to critical inpatient and outpatient services for more than half
a million people in the GTA.
Dignitaries and numerous notable guests were out in full force at the
Gala to support TEGH, including: the Honourable Julian Fantino, Toronto
Police Chief Bill Blair, Councillor Doug Ford, Peter and Diana Thomson,
James and Alexandra Arnett, the Kimsa family, the Jackman family,
singer Matt Dusk, sports celebrites Brad Boyes, Adam Lind and Eric
The live auction items created quite a stir at the fundraiser, with the
trip to London for the 2012 Games elevating the buzz in the room to
Olympic levels. At one point, with the “Comedy Experience Trip for four
to New York” up for auction, Arnett did his signature “Gob” chicken
dance to much applause, raising the final bid. One lucky dinner guest
won a BMW 328i Sedan, generously donated by BMW Canada for an
end-of-night draw. Ticket sales for the draw helped drive the total
funds raised for the Hospital even higher.
Event sponsors included: Presenting sponsor, BMO Financial Group; and
Gold sponsors, TD Bank, Telus and BMW.
To download broadcast quality B-Roll visit: http://cnw.pathfireondemand.com/viewpackage.action?packageid=535
About Toronto East General Hospital:
Toronto East General Hospital (TEGH) has been proudly serving the
community of East Toronto since 1929, when it opened its doors as a
110-bed general hospital. Over the years TEGH has continually renewed
its commitment to the community it serves. Today TEGH is a large,
urban, full-service community teaching hospital, providing
comprehensive care to a diverse population of 400,000, representing
over 45 cultural and linguistic groups. TEGH boasts Centres of
Excellence in Thoracic Surgery, Family Medicine Residency Program, and
Progressive Ventilation Weaning among its leadership programs.
About the TEGH Capital Redevelopment Campaign:
In recent months, TEGH received final approval for the redevelopment
from the Government of Ontario and the City of Toronto. TEGH is
currently in the midst of a $60 million private sector campaign to
raise funds for the Hospital’s $211-million redevelopment project.
More than $45 million has been raised to-date, through the generosity
of donors, including 100 per cent participation in the campaign by TEGH
doctors. Construction of a new eight-storey Patient Care Centre will
replace some of the oldest and most dysfunctional clinical spaces and
patient rooms. Some of the highlights of the expansion include:
improved infection control, an increase in privacy for patients and
families, addressing accessibility requirements, and enabling TEGH to
retain and attract the best doctors.
SOURCE Toronto East General Hospital
Video with caption: “Video: Seinfeld and Arnett help raise three million for the Toronto East General Hospital
“. Video available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/cgi-bin/playback.cgi?file=20120413_C5292_VIDEO_EN_12255.mp4&posterurl=http://photos.newswire.ca/images/20120413_C5292_PHOTO_EN_12255.jpg&clientName=Toronto%20East%20General%20Hospital&caption=Video%3A%20Seinfeld%20and%20Arnett%20help%20raise%20three%20million%20for%20the%20Toronto%20East%20General%20Hospital%0D%0A&title=TORONTO%20EAST%20GENERAL%20HOSPITAL%20%2D%20Laughter%20is%20the%20best%20medicine%3A%20Seinfeld%20and%20Arnett%20Help%20raise%20three%20million%20for%20the%20Toronto%20East%20General%20Hospital&headline=Laughter%20is%20the%20best%20medicine%3A%20Seinfeld%20and%20Arnett%20Help%20raise%20three%20million%20for%20the%20Toronto%20East%20General%20Hospital
Image with caption: “Jerry Seinfeld and Will Arnett helped raise three million dollars for the Toronto East General Hospital at the “Laughter Is The Best Medicine” Comedy Gala on Thursday, April 12, 2012 at the Allstream Centre in Toronto. Pictured left to right: Will Arnett, Jerry Seinfeld, Amy Poehler (Arnett’s wife). (CNW Group/Toronto East General Hospital)”. Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20120413_C5292_PHOTO_EN_12254.jpg