The Checkup Winter Newsletter 2019 | Page 5

Recently, the family and friends of the late Margaret MacDonald gathered to cut the ribbon for the re-naming of the Medicine Wheel Room located on the Continuing Care floor of the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre. This airy space has long been a place dedicated to contemplation, spiritual renewal, and celebration. During a prayer, drumming and smudge service, the room was rededicated to honor Fort McKay elder, Margaret Marie MacDonald. Northern Lights Health Centre represents the alignment and continuous interaction of the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health for patients, residents and families in our care. The Fort McKay First Nation also commissioned a painting for the occasion from renowned artist, and Margaret’s son, Frederick R. McDonald. The painting was unveiled at the dedication ceremony. In addition, four drums were commissioned from Nicholas Giant and were dedicated to the room. The Northern Lights Health Foundation Board of Directors and staff were on hand to pay their respects and acknowledge Margaret’s contributions. The naming of the room was made possible through the Chief and Council of the Fort McKay First Nation who wished to recognize Margaret for her outstanding contributions to Fort McKay and the larger Wood Buffalo region. She was instrumental in community development in Fort McKay and was a strong supporter of local and regional organizations, events, and charities. The naming was included as part of the Nations commitment to the Health Foundation’s Gratitude Campaign. An astute businesswoman and entrepreneur, Margaret was also the first Aboriginal member of the Northern Lights Regional Health Authority Board where she provided governance in support of health care programs and services. Margaret’s legacy of compassion and caring and supporting health programs beyond the hospital setting has endured to this day. Painting of Margaret MacDonald by Frederick R. McDonald Alberta Health Services (AHS) recognizes facilities and services on traditional Indigenous territories and provides accessible, appropriate health services for First Nations, Metis and Inuit people in Alberta. The Margaret MacDonald Medicine Wheel at the Nicholas Giant with the drums he created for the Margaret MacDonald Medicine Wheel Room THE NORTHERN LIGHTS HEALTH FOUNDATION 5