Thompson Rivers University

Day of Giving donors really do make a difference

February 2, 2024

A group of respiratory students expressing their thanks after donors stepped up during the 2023 Day of Giving to provide them with high-end stethoscopes.

The financial squeeze felt a little less tight for some Thompson Rivers University (TRU) students in 2023 because of donor support during the last Day of Giving fundraiser.

Students in nursing and respiratory therapy programs were recently gifted lab kits — items they would normally buy themselves — generously funded by donors during last year’s Day of Giving.

Nursing student Denise Chicas

Nursing student Denise Chicas

In September, 78 first-year nursing students were presented with a nursing kit that included a blood pressure cuff, stethoscope, bandage scissors and a penlight — all essential tools for lab work and clinical rotations. Additionally, 112 respiratory therapy students were outfitted with high-end stethoscopes.

Many donors contributed to the cause during 2023’s Day of Giving, including the team at the TB Vets Charitable Foundation who stepped up to ensure there was enough money to cover the cost of every kit.

The 2024 Day of Giving is coming up at the end of February, which will provide more students with supports that help them through their academic careers. Those who benefitted in 2023 were grateful for the support.

“I’m very excited,” nursing student Sarah Dubetz said after receiving her kit. “This has been a long journey and it’s coming to fruition. I’m going back to university after not being in university for 10 years. (Receiving a kit) is a weight off my shoulders, one more thing I don’t have to put on my list of things to do.”

Drawn to TRU’s nursing program because of the state-of-the-art simulation labs and new facility, Denise Chicas says now that she’s here, she’s equally as grateful for the knowledgeable instructors and supportive colleagues she’s met. Receiving the kit and other awards solidifies her choice to leave her home in Coquitlam to attend TRU.

“I feel super blessed, super appreciative,” she said. “It motivates me to keep going and allows me to focus more on studying and building the skills I need to be the best nurse possible.”

In 2023, TRU’s sixth annual Day of Giving raised $54,095 for TRU students at the Kamloops and Williams Lake campuses, surpassing the goal of raising $48,000 in 48 hours. A total of 116 donors — including alumni, long-time individual supporters, organizations and new contributors — chose from a variety of funds to make their donation.

Nursing student Sarah Dubetz

Nursing student Sarah Dubetz

Day of Giving 2024 is near

2024 Day of Giving aims to raise $48,000 in 48 hours, from the morning of Thurs., Feb. 29 to the end of day Fri., March 1. Donors can contribute to a featured fund or any fund of their choice at

“Supporting students helps encourage the best minds, reduces barriers to education and promotes programming and equipment upgrades to keep our students at the head of the pack,” said TRU advancement officer Katrina Harding.

“Day of Giving is when we ask the community to help build the kind of future they want to see by investing in the learning and research taking place at TRU. We invite everyone to join us by making a gift Feb. 29 through March 1.”

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