Thistledown gives children’s hospitals $26 million


A charity founded by Shopify founder Tobias Lütke and Fiona McKean has donated $26 million to support Canada’s 13 acute care children’s hospitals across the country.

Thistledown Foundation – founded by the couple in 2019 – said there was a particularly urgent need for additional funding to help hospitals deal with anxiety, depression and eating disorders among young people who have been hit hard by the pandemic and the isolation it sparked.

“Deferred or delayed access to child development services, mental healthcare, surgical and other diagnostic services can have devastating and long-term impacts on children’s health outcomes,” the charity said in a statement.

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“For millions of children and youth who have experienced extended school closures, delays in access to essential social, community and healthcare services, and physical separation from friends and family, the pandemic has had both direct and indirect impacts on their health and well-being.”

The donation will provide $2 million each to Canada’s children’s hospitals.

“Through this gift, our hope is that children across Canada will have the best possible care to enable them to feel better soon and get back to the important job of being kids,” McKean said.


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