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RMCHCS dresses up for a good cause

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Charity Invitational Gala continues fundraising efforts

The Rehoboth McKinley Christian Health Care Services raised approximately $550,000 of a $750,000 goal to upgrade and renovate the Dr. Philip Kamps Women’s Health and Birthing Center in September at its 23rd Annual Charity Invitational Golf Tournament. As part of the hospital’s annual fund-raiser, the “Paper Faces on Parade” Charity Invitational Gala Masquerade Ball was the second part of this year’s fund raising effort. It was held Oct. 19 in Gallup.

“Our fund raising efforts have been phenomenal,” RMCHCS CEO David Conejo said. “This will go a long way toward upgrading the Women’s Health Center by providing an enhanced level of birthing and overall care for the women of McKinley County. We thank the community for their generous support.” Conejo noted that the hospital often receives $100-200,000 during the holiday season, which he believes will help them reach their goal of $750,000 for the year.

The fun-filled gala attracted 350 masked and costumed participants who were entertained by master of ceremonies RMCHCS Marketing Director Rhonda Ray and radio show host and Gallup restaurateur Sammy Chioda. Western Health Foundation Executive Director Ina Burmeister led off the evening by describing the hospital’s fund raising efforts and an invocation was delivered by the Reverend Adrianne Coleman of the First United Methodist Church.

The crowd feasted on Prosecco and appetizers, southwestern hush puppies, jambalaya skewers, mini muffulettas and prime rib, or a vegetarian plate with dauphine potatoes calabacitas followed by a dessert of Tiramisu was offered as the entrée. The dinner was prepared by Chef Bob Witte and students from Navajo Technical University Culinary Arts Program and served by students from Miyamura High School.

Terry Fuhs nominated as 2019 Charity Invitational honoree

Before the dinner, Dr. Alan Beamsley, DO and Beatrice Nuñez, RN presented RMCHCS’s Terry L. Fuhs RN, MSN, CEN, CPEN, and Clinical Educator as the 2019 Charity Invitational Honoree.

“I am very honored to receive this outstanding award, particularly since I am the first nurse to receive it,” Fuhs said. “To work at such a great hospital with wonderful co-workers and being able to serve the great community of Gallup and beyond is also an honor.”

In 1978 Fuhs began her career with RMCHCS as an assistant nurse, eventually earning an LPN, RN, BSN, and MSN. Fuhs is a 41 year veteran of RMCHCS, having worked in various hospital departments while earning kudos and several awards, including RMCHCS Nurse of the Year, The Thomas Carmany Award, the 1994 NM Hospital Association Meritorious Awards for professional excellence and volunteer efforts. She has also been named RMCHCS Employee of the Month three times.

During the four-hour gala, the crowd danced to tunes spun by popular Gallup rodeo announcer and radio host Kyle Tom. Additional entertainment was provided by Patrick Moore and “The Off, Off Broadway Singers” who performed Music of the Night and stories for a Masquerade Ball from the Broadway hit Phantom of the Opera.

There were nine live and 25 silent auctions of unique jewelry, painting and sculptures by famous New Mexican artists held during the evening which included 25 area sponsors.

RMCHCS second major fundraiser For Women’s Health Center

This charity fundraising effort is the annual fundraiser by the hospital’s Western Health Foundation charity program.  Monies raised are part of a five-year plan that will begin with the renovation of the hospital’s Dr. Philip Kamps Women’s Health and Birthing Center. Specific additions will include seven labor and delivery beds, fetal monitors, and comfortable visitor chairs in addition to 18 computers and four infant warmers and resuscitation units.

Phase II of the Western Health Foundation’s fund raising efforts will focus on supporting the renovation and expansion of the College Clinic building in order to accommodate a brand new Family Medicine Residency Program. College Clinic construction will be used to expand the clinic space and provide for the growth of the Family Medicine Residency Program, including purchasing new equipment and furniture.

Phase III will be focused on ensuring that a sustainable Family Medicine Residency Program is in place and finalizing upgrades to the entire College Clinic facility.

By William Madaras
For the Sun