Vaughan, ON (May 7, 2019) – On May 4, Mackenzie Health Foundation hosted its 14th annual Strides for Stroke which raised more than $287,000 – beating last year’s all-time record and hitting a new milestone of $2 million raised since the event’s inception in 2006 – to support patient care at Mackenzie Health. More than 1,300 people hit the streets of Richmond Hill and Vaughan for the 5KM run/walk in the Foundation’s largest community event. This event attracts a significant number of community members, patients, doctors, nurses, volunteers and hospital staff, and helps ensure that Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital and the future Mackenzie Vaughan Hospital have the lifesaving equipment it needs to deliver the best patient care.

Devon Briggs of Uxbridge was first to the finish line with a time of 18:43. The top fundraising team again this year was UniversalCare Movers and Shakers who raised more than $31,000 and Cathy Messina took home the prize for top fundraiser, raising more than $26,500. The post-race celebration featured live music courtesy of Arcadia Academy of Music, a frenzy of food trucks, vendor fair and Family Fun Zone.

Mackenzie Health is home to the York Region District Stroke Centre, recognized as a centre of excellence. Over the last four years, the number of stroke patients admitted to inpatient care has increased across Ontario. Last year alone, Mackenzie Health cared for nearly 500 stroke patients which is an increase of more than 100 patients since 2014. Since 2006, Strides for Stroke has raised $2 million to help fund critical programs, care, services and equipment like CT Scanners, MRI and ECG machines, vital sign and bedside monitors used throughout the hospital and in the diagnoses and treatment of stroke. For more information, please visit

The 2020 UniversalCare Strides for Stroke is set for Saturday, May 2.


“Strides for Stroke shines a light on the heart and spirit of York Region. I live in this community and I run in this race every year. This event is a special opportunity for thousands in our community to participate, give back and make a difference to the hundreds of patients who turn to Mackenzie Health for stroke care each year.” – ALTAF STATIONWALA, PRESIDENT AND CEO, MACKENZIE HEALTH

 “We are so inspired by the dedication and enthusiasm of our communities in Richmond Hill, Vaughan, King and indeed across York Region. We’re grateful to all our supporters, volunteers and participants who have helped make this year one of the most successful Strides for Stroke events yet.” – INGRID PERRY, PRESIDENT AND CEO, MACKENZIE HEALTH FOUNDATION

“Strides for Stroke is my favourite community event. My family, employees and I have been a proud supporter and participant for over 11 years. In addition to raising essential funds for Mackenzie Health and supporting patient care, it’s exciting to see how committed our community is in shaping a healthier future for people in York Region.” – JOSEPH GULIZIA, PRESIDENT AND CEO, UNIVERSALCARE CANADA

Strides for Stroke brings together people from all walks of life in community to celebrate and support the incredible work that the Mackenzie Health’s regional stroke program provides for those in need. It shows the dedication our community has in giving to initiatives so important for families today and tomorrow. I’m so proud to be a part of the volunteers and participants who, each year, contribute to a successful celebration of community, health, with stories of inspiration, all in support of exceptional patient care.” – PATRICK CICCOLINI, STRIDES FOR STROKE CO-CHAIR

“I am honoured to be partnered with Patrick and to work with the passionate and dedicated individuals on our committee. Little Morello Vettese Segreto (LMVS) law firm, here in Vaughan, has been a big supporter of Strides for Stroke and Mackenzie Health for the last seven years, as we believe being part of a community requires active community engagement. We are committed to helping keep exceptional care close to home.” – J. JOHN VETTESE, STRIDES FOR STROKE CO-CHAIR

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About Mackenzie Health and Mackenzie Health Foundation
Mackenzie Health is a dynamic regional health care provider which includes the existing Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital and the future Mackenzie Vaughan Hospital, as well as a comprehensive network of community-based services. In March 2017, the organization received its second consecutive award of Accreditation with Exemplary Standing from Accreditation Canada for its commitment to safety and quality patient care. This is the highest rating a Canadian health care provider can receive. Guided by a vision to create a world-class health experience, Mackenzie Health has an unrelenting focus on the patient and is dedicated to patient needs now and in the future. With over 500,000 residents in Southwest York Region, Mackenzie Health is proud to serve one of the fastest growing and most diverse communities in Canada. For more information, please visit 

The Mackenzie Health Foundation is spearheading the Exceptional Care Belongs Here campaign – the largest fundraising drive ever led by a community hospital in Canada – which is committed to raising $250 million in community contributions toward the total $1.6-billion project cost of the new Mackenzie Vaughan Hospital. Since 1977, Mackenzie Health Foundation has raised more than $142 million for capital projects, medical equipment, technology and educational opportunities for Mackenzie Health. For more information, please visit

Media contact:
Michelle Stegnar
Senior Communications Consultant, Mackenzie Health
905-883-1212 ext. 7484 |