Mental Health stands tall at the CCA

Burton Cummings was the surprise entertainment at this year's Country Classic Auction.
Burton Cummings was the surprise entertainment at this year's Country Classic Auction.

London, Ont. - The 28th Country Classic Auction, presented by Siskinds: the Law Firm, was held at Western Fair's Metroland Media Agriplex on Saturday (Nov. 7). It was an amazing night of shopping, dining and entertainment for a great cause. "Community support is essential to keep London Health Sciences Centre at the forefront of health care," says LHSC President and CEO Murray Glendining. "Proceeds from this year's Country Classic Auction will help our hospital's Mental Health Services fund leading-edge research and education initiatives, enhance access and awareness, and strengthen the continuity of care for those with mental health disorders.

At one point in the live auction, an appeal was made asking the 1,300 people attendance to donate in support of mental health. As amounts were called out by Auctioneer Graham Crow, people held up their bid cards at the level they wanted to make a donation.

In 10 minutes, the appeal raised $78,000 for London Health Sciences Foundation's Mental Health Campaign. By the night's end the total raised from the auction topped $1 million (gross).

Mental Health Services at LHSC is among the few programs of its kind in Canada to address the entire lifespan, with a treatment model based on the knowledge that earlier interventions produce better outcomes. The Mental Health Campaign's $12 million goal includes support for the hospital's Early Intervention and Transition Age Programs, Mental Health Patient Assistance Program, Research and Innovation Catalyst Program, and other initiatives.

The appeal was just one of the many highlights from an evening where attendees dressed down in country duds, enjoyed a gourmet BBQ dinner, and shopped their way through hundreds of fabulous live and silent auction items.

"It takes committed partners like Siskinds, and Shoppers Drug Mart, along with dedicated volunteers and great donors to make events like this so successful", says CCA Co-Chair Mike Malleck. "The CCA has become the largest and longest-running charity auction in the region because of our amazing supporters."

Celebrities pitching in at the auction included Olympic Champion Curler Jennifer Jones, CTV 2 news personalities Tara Overholt and Nick Paparella, and BX93's Dave and Rachel. To top off the evening, Burton Cummings was announced as the surprise entertainment.

The appearance of the former front man for The Guess Who marks the sixth time the LHSF event has delivered an up-close-and-personal concert from award-winning artists to LHSC supporters. The multi-Juno, multi-platinum, award winning Cummings - who can boast a star on the Canadian Walk of Fame with The Guess Who and another all his own - rocked the appreciative audience with an energetic concert of top hits like: "Stand Tall, "Break it to Them Gently" and "American Woman".

For more on the Country Classic Auction visit

For more on donor-supported Mental Health Services click here.