STARS officials call on Albertans to support lottery

For the first time in its history, the STARS Alberta Lottery is in danger of not selling out, organizers say.

  • Mar. 10, 2016 12:00 p.m.

By Zachary Cormier

For the first time in its history, the STARS Alberta Lottery is in danger of not selling out, organizers say.

During a press conference last week, STARS announced that the current economic climate has caused a slow-down in ticket sales for the 2016 lottery, and organizers encouraged Albertans to participate and buy tickets ahead of the March 23rd deadline.

“We are just over 70 per cent sold out right now, and in prior years we have sold out at this time, so we are behind and look for Albertans to help us out this year,” said Jeff Quick, the chief financial officer for STARS.

STARS is a community-based non-profit charitable organization that provides specialized emergency medical care and helicopter transportation for critically ill and injured patients. The annual Alberta Lottery is the organization’s largest source of funding in the province and raises enough money each year to cover a third of STARS’ total operating costs.

Last year the lottery netted the organization $11 million.

Quick said part of the reason the lottery is taking longer than usual to sell out is because of the economic conditions in Alberta.

“The whole province is experiencing it and we’re no different than any other organization in this province,” he said, adding that STARS is encouraging Albertans to help out in any way that they can.

“If they could go to starslotteryalberta.ca and purchase a ticket, we have $25 tickets and $60 tickets, $100 tickets and $250 ticket packages and anything you can do would be greatly appreciated.”

In 2014-2015, STARS flew a total of 1,839 missions out of their three bases in Alberta and their teams fly an average of five times every day and many of those missions save lives.

“It supports STARS and I know it’s an economic downturn in the province but emergencies don’t wait,” said Rebecca Fillinger, a mother from Rocky Mountain House whose son Rowan’s life has been saved twice by STARS’ service once when Rebecca suffered an infection while she was pregnant with him and then again after Rowan fell backwards into the family fire pit at the age of two and suffered severe, life-threatening burns.

“If it wasn’t for STARS, who saved my life and saved his twice, he wouldn’t be here,” she said.

In response to the economic hardship in the province, Quick said some of the larger ticket packages have been reconfigured into smaller, less expensive ones to make them more affordable to Albertans.

“Previously, people have bought the $100 and $250 ticket packages, but of course with the current economy there’s not that kind of money around. People are looking at the $25 and $60 packages, so we created more of those,” he said, adding that while the lottery not selling out would not be devastating to STARS, however it would mean the organization would have to cut back in non-essential areas.

“We continue to operate. We’re here for the patients, we’re an essential service. We as a not-for-profit always run our business prudently and so we’re always watching our revenues and expenses, so we’ll be fine,” he said.

“Like other organizations we’re cutting back in the areas that we can, but we obviously don’t cut back in the essential service of our pilots and our medical crew and meeting the needs of the patients.”

The final cut off for the 2016 STARS Lottery is on March 23rd. For more information, or to purchase ticket packages you can visit the STARS Lottery web site at www.starslotteryalberta.ca.

zcormier@lacombeexpress.com

 

Just Posted

Police officers and their dogs undergo training at the RCMP Police Dog Services training centre in Innisfail, Alta., on Wednesday, July 15, 2015. Mounties say they are searching for an armed and dangerous man near a provincial park in northern Alberta who is believed to have shot and killed a service dog during a police chase. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
RCMP search for armed man in northern Alberta after police dog shot and killed

Cpl. Deanna Fontaine says a police service dog named Jago was shot during the pursuit

Alberta now has 2,336 active cases of COVID-19, with 237 people in hospital, including 58 in intensive care. (Black Press file photo)
Red Deer down to 73 active cases of COVID-19, lowest since early November

The Central zone has 253 active cases of the virus

The Sylvan Lake Gulls show off the home jerseys (white) and their way jerseys at the Gulls Media Day on June 17, before the season opener. Following the media day, the team took to the field for their first practise. (Photo by Megan Roth/Sylvan Lake News)
Sylvan Lake Gulls ready to throw first pitch as construction continues

The Gulls inaugural season kicks off June 18 with a game against the Edmonton Prospects

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

A lotto Max ticket is shown in Toronto on Monday Feb. 26, 2018.THE CANADIAN PRESS
No winning ticket sold for Friday’s $70 million Lotto Max jackpot

The huge jackpot has remained unclaimed for several weeks now

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant grew in Canada this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s public health agency reports spike in confirmed cases of Delta variant

More than 2,000 cases of the variant confirmed across all 10 provinces and in one territory

The federal government says it wants to ban most flavoured vaping products in a bid to reduce their appeal to youth. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Craig Mitchelldyer
Health Canada proposes ban on most vaping flavours it says appeal to youth

If implemented, the regulations would restrict all e-cigarette flavours except tobacco, mint and menthol

The Montreal Police logo is seen in Montreal on Wednesday, July 8, 2020. Some Quebec politicians are calling for an investigation after a video was released that appears to show a Montreal police officer with his leg on a young Black man’s neck during an arrest. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Probe called for after video appearing to show Montreal officer’s knee on Black youth’s neck

Politicians call for investigation after clip evokes memories of George Floyd incident

Flora Northwest was taken to the Ermineskin residential school when she was six years old. (Emily Jaycox/Ponoka News)
Ermineskin residential school survivor: ‘It just brings me back to the cries at night’

Discovery in Kamloops of remains of 215 children a painful time for survivors

Thousands of protesters make their way through the downtown core during a Black Lives Matter protest in Ottawa, Friday June 5, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
MPs’ study of systemic racism in policing concludes RCMP needs new model

Chair of the House public safety committee says it’s time for a reckoning on ‘quasi-military’ structure

Most Read