The Gimli Community Health Centre has received a grant from the Dr. Elaine Sigurdson Memorial Scholarship Fund for the purchase of a tilt wheelchair for the acute care program. When individuals are unable to weight shift independently, or change positions while seated upright, they are at high risk for pressure injuries. This chair eliminates those risks to patients.

In 2016 Barrie and Ardith Sigurdson, along with Barrie’s parents Alma and Raymond, established a fund in memory of Dr. Elaine Sigurdson with the Westshore Community Foundation. Subsequent to that, other family members and friends have also generously contributed to the fund. The purpose of the fund is to provide an annual scholarship to a former student from the Evergreen School Division who has been accepted into the Faculty of Medicine or the Physician Assistant Program at University of Manitoba in order to help encourage them to return to their rural roots upon graduation.

Elaine studied at the University of Manitoba, and completed her internship and residency requirements in Regina and Ontario. Soon after meeting all of the requirements to be a doctor, she moved to Denmark with her husband Otto Larsen. By that time, she had been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Unfortunately, Elaine passed away at the young age of 59, and her life remains an inspiration to her family and many friends.

This year, since there is no one eligible for the scholarship, the fund is being used to purchase a tilt wheelchair for the Gimli Health Centre.

Tim Arnason, President of the Westshore Community Foundation says “Westshore Community Foundation was delighted when the Sigurdson Family chose to place the Dr. Elaine Sigurdson Memorial Scholarship with them.”

“The overall purpose of this scholarship falls well within our mandate of building a lasting legacy within our catchment area and the specific health-care focus is on point with one of our main areas of support,” says Arnason.

Executive director of the Interlake Eastern Health Foundation Pamela McCallum highlights how working with local foundation’s benefits the communities we live and work in.

“We are so grateful for the support from the Westshore Community Foundation and the Dr. Elaine Sigurdson Memorial Scholarship Fund. When community groups work together for the betterment of health, everyone wins and we look forward to working with them on future projects.”

Interlake Eastern Foundation’s mission is to raise funds that support health care in the Interlake-Eastern health region. For more information visit or contact Pamela McCallum, executive director at (204) 785-7044.

Photo L-R: Raymond Sigurdson, Leanne Nickel-Brown (Gimli CTM), Alma Sigurdson, Barrie Sigurdson, Ardith Sigurdson, Tim Arnason (President of the Westshore Community Foundation), and Tristin Tergesen (Past President of the Westshore Community Foundation).