Manor board on hunt for new fundraising chair

Manitoulin Centennial Manor

MANITOULIN—Manitoulin Centennial Manor has enjoyed several years of outstanding fundraising efforts under the steady hand of volunteer coordinator Wendy Gauthier, but with the recent retirement of Ms. Gauthier a vacuum now exists at the helm.

Board chair Pat MacDonald noted during the February 17 board meeting there had been hope that Ms. Gauthier would be able to recruit someone to fill her shoes, but that fell through. “Wendy indicated in a recent email that the people she had in mind didn’t want to take it on,” said Ms. MacDonald. 

It was suggested that the Manor had placed an advertisement seeking someone to step forward to take on the volunteer position but there was some uncertainty around whether an advertisement had been placed, but in any event, administrator Don Cook noted that so far no one had come forward to take up the gauntlet.

Board member Mary Jane Lenihan suggested the board should advertise the position, whether it had done so previously or not. “Just to make sure people are aware it is available and is a volunteer position,” she said.

In the meantime, Mr. Cook noted that the dining room table upgrades are underway, with the emphasis on assembling the wheelchair accessible versions first. “They are radically different from the other tables and are designed to make the residents in wheelchairs more comfortable,” he said. “The interior design is completed, filling out the details and tenders are going out for the replacement of counters and cupboards. We will see what kind of price we can get, if it is better for one piece or to do them separately.”

He noted that the pandemic has delayed some of the work being done at the Manor, but that things are progressing, nonetheless.

The Manor is currently fully occupied (with four beds reserved for isolation purposes should they be needed) and that the wait list is currently sitting at 32 applicants.

“The toughest issue facing the Manor right now is covering for staff that are isolating due to close contact with someone that is (COVID-19) positive or being positive themselves,” shared Mr. Cook. “We are continuing to use agency staff for RPNs and PSWs and we continue to recruit for nursing, both RN and RPN as well as PSW staff.” On the bright side, the Manor is now fully staffed in the dietary department.

The only current staff issue is one involving a misunderstanding of vacation payouts, but a resolution is currently being negotiated between human resources and the union.

The Manor saw a break-even month, with an unaudited surplus of $690 for the month of January, some $1,362 below budget. The 2022 budget no longer includes a $10,000 a month contribution to reserves, a situation about which some members of the board have expressed misgivings.