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Area hospitals join together in Uganda shoe drive effort

Valley hospitals presented shoes to Making a Difference International Inc. At the presentation were, from left, are (from left): Curt Geissler, president and CEO, Lakeview Hospital; MADI Director Funwi Tita; Marian Furlong, president and CEO, Hudson Hospital and Clinics; and Steve Massey, president and CEO, Westfields Hospital. Submitted photo

Three hospitals in the St. Croix Valley -- Hudson Hospital & Clinics (Hudson), Lakeview Hospital (Stillwater) and Westfields Hospital (New Richmond) -- collaborated to host a shoe drive benefitting Making a Difference International Inc.

MADI is an organization that collects shoes, medical supplies and other supplies for the people of Uganda. It is a first step in enhancing

their lives through education, health and livelihood. Large shoe boxes were available in the lobbies of each hospital where staff, volunteers and visitors could donate new and gently used shoes for people in Africa.

Nearly 1,000 pairs of shoes were presented to Funwi Tita, director of MADI on Wednesday, March 20, at Hudson Hospital by hospital CEOs Marian Furlong, president & CEO, Hudson Hospital & Clinics; Curt Geissler, Lakeview Hospital president; and Steve Massey, president & CEO, Westfields Hospital.

Tita gave a presentation with photos from his last trip in March and shared how donations like this help so many individuals.