The Salvation Army Toronto Grace Health Centre celebrates the grand opening
of the Irwin Rooftop Garden and the 30th anniversary of palliative care at
the Grace

TORONTO, June 23 /CNW/ - In October 2009 The Salvation Army Toronto Grace Health Centre received its largest donation in the over 100 year history of the hospital. The $1.9 million donation has had a profound impact on the Toronto Grace Health Centre's 119 bed facility and the medically complex patients it serves.

The $1.9 million estate gift by the late John Irwin demonstrates the esteem in which he held the Grace. "John was a great supporter of the Grace Health Centre and The Salvation Army," said life-long friend Alan Irwin. "The Grace was home to both John and his wife Norah in the final years of their lives, and they were deeply moved by the compassionate care provided to patients."

A portion of this gift has supported the renovation of the 6th floor rooftop into a beautiful garden space, accessible to all. The garden will allow patients, families, visitors and staff to have a green space in the middle of the downtown core. From the fountain, dazzling grounds, artwork and the patients' own vegetable gardens the space offers a 'green' and peaceful retreat to all who visit.

The official opening of the Irwin Roof Garden will be held Friday June 25, 2010 from 1pm - 2pm. The dedication and opening of the Roof Garden is to be officiated by Commissioner William W. Francis Territorial Commander of The Salvation Army, Canada and Bermuda Territory.

Commissioner Francis will also be paying tribute to the Toronto Grace Palliative Care program on the 30th Anniversary since the opening of the inpatient unit. The Palliative Care unit was officially opened June 12, 1979 by the Lieutenant-Governor, The Honorable Pauline McGibbon. Also in attendance were the Minister of Health, The Honourable Dennis Trimbrell and Commissioner John D. Waldren.

About Salvation Army Toronto Grace Health Centre

Toronto Grace Health Centre (TGHC) is a 119 bed facility owned and operated by The Salvation Army located in the heart of downtown Toronto. Toronto Grace is renowned for the compassion, clinical excellence and patient centered care provided. The heart of patient-centred care is recognizing that each person has individualized priorities and goals reflected in their plan of care. Through understanding and appreciating the complexity of day-to-day life, Toronto Grace provides patient-centered care for individuals with multifaceted chronic diseases who require Complex Continuing Care, Slow-Paced Rehabilitation and Palliative Care. More information is available at

About the Salvation Army

The Salvation Army is an international Christian organization that began its work in Canada in 1882 and has grown to become the largest non-governmental direct provider of social services in the country. The Salvation Army gives hope and support to vulnerable people today and everyday in 400 communities across Canada and 121 countries around the world. The Salvation Army offers practical assistance for children and families, often tending to the basic necessities of life, provides shelter for homeless people and rehabilitation for people who have lost control of their lives to an addiction.

When you give to The Salvation Army, you are investing in the future of marginalized and overlooked people in your community.

SOURCE The Salvation Army - Ontario Central Division

For further information: For further information: Alexis Dishaw, Director, Communications and Strategic Planning, Toronto Grace Health Centre Foundation, 416.925.2251 ext. 283,

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