Philanthropy is something that has a generational impact. No one understood this better than Lilly Schmidt, who in her Will left a Legacy of support for the Sturgeon Community Hospitals’ Adult Day Program.
The Lilly Schmidt Memorial Fund was set up in 2013 to provide funds to support a program that she attended in the years following a stroke that left her with some physical deficits – a program that had a wonderfully positive impact on both her physical and mental health needs.
The Adult Day Program - based out of the Sturgeon Community Hospital - offers day support and respite day programs in the community to adults who are in need of recreation and leisure activities, family teaching and support, assistance with basic personal care, physical therapy and occupational therapy and mental health support.
Lilly’s daughter Carol Quilliam says that the Day Program had a huge impact on her mother’s quality of life. “The Adult Day Program was all round. It was a community and a family more than it was a program. It met so many of her needs.”
“My mother loved crafting and social interaction and that was what the program was all about for her… After her days at the program she was up and perky – the impact on her mental health and well-being was as great as it was on her physical health” Carol said.
They took day trips to greenhouses and learned about gardening, to city hall to talk about architecture and Gizmo Williams even brought in the Grey Cup so they could have their picture taken with it after their win.
“The adult day program became her topic of conversation. It really brought her out of her shell and allowed her to interact. The fact that it took her mind off her own health was good for her.”
When Lilly eventually passed, her Legacy supported several charities that were important to her, and the Adult Day Program was a natural part of that. “It was as simple as just deciding what she wanted to support in her Will and making allowances for it,” said her son Cameron Quilliam
Cameron says her true legacy were the lessons she taught her family about philanthropy: “She was very community minded her entire life.”
Because she believed so strongly in giving back to the community, she taught her children to believe the same. The family continues to support the Hospital in a myriad ways, including donating funds in 2013 in memory of Nicola Quilliam (affectionally known as Q-Mom) to create a dedicated doctors lounge.