The 34th annual Janeway Children’s Miracle Network telethon on NTV brings out the very best in Newfoundlanders and Labradorians
June 2-3 marks the 34th annual Janeway Children’s Miracle Network Telethon, a two day initiative that brings the entirety of Newfoundland and Labrador together.
The Janeway Children’s Hospital Foundation is a registered Canadian charitable organization created to raise funds to benefit the health care of Newfoundland and Labrador’s most precious resource – our children.
For the seventh straight year the Janeway Foundation has partnered with NTV, OZFM and The Newfoundland Herald for their annual telethon, which continues to grow three decades since its inception.
‘Above & Beyond’
“NTV, OZFM and The Newfoundland Herald are quite excited to be once again working behind the scenes to host the 2018 Janeway Telethon,” shared General Manager of Newfoundland Broadcasting Company, Lindsey Andrews. “Each year, our NTV staff go above and beyond to make sure that the Janeway Telethon is a success. Many long hours are spent over the winter planning, organizing and preparing to produce the 13 hours of live telethon coverage.”
The telethon works like a well-oiled machine, with hundreds of volunteers working tirelessly during the weekend from five different locations across the island. But truly, the telethon is a year long endeavour.
“The telethon is an all year event when it comes to fundraising,” says Lynn Sparkes, President and CEO of the Janeway Children’s Hospital Foundation. “We have organizations and different companies that, as soon as one telethon is over, they contact us and say they want to get ready for next year.”
For two of the hosts of the NTV broadcast, Toni Marie-Wiseman and Eddie Sheerr, the telethon is a representation of the hard working crews behind the scenes, but also a welcomed acknowledgment of the giving nature of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.
‘Part of the Community’
“Since we’ve been hosting the Janeway Telethon, I think it allows the entire province and whoever is watching to see just how good our team is and our staff is,” says Wiseman. “And Geoff Stirling was very big on family. He was a very giving person, but didn’t want to flash it around. He was very private about his charity work. It’s nice for the company to show what we can do as private broadcasters, but also that we too like to give back to the community and the people who watch us.”
“The telethon itself is a great thing to be a part of,” Sheerr adds. “You really get to see how much work goes into it and how much planning goes into it beforehand to make it come off so smoothly and professionally. From a personal standpoint, it’s important for me to feel like a part of the community, and helping our local children’s hospital as much as we can is very rewarding.”
Broadcasting from five locations including NTV’s Studio on Logy Bay Road, the Avalon Mall in St. John’s, and three locations island-wide in Grand Falls-Windsor, Corner Brook and Burin, the telethon thrives from the efforts of its volunteers and dedicated staffers, the unsung heroes who make the entire event possible. “There are a lot of unsung heroes,” says Sparkes. “There’s no way we can thank each and every volunteer, but the great part about this that always amazes me, is that we have volunteers who phone us and say can I please come and volunteer for you again this year. And they give us their entire weekend, come and say “can we please.”
As a special sneak peek, Andrews shares that the NTV crew have been honoured with building an all new set for the Janeway Telethon in the NTV home studio.
”They have been working hard on this new build for the last number of months,” he explains. “I have managed to get to see a behind the scenes view of what is in store for our viewers and I think it is going to look awesome when all is revealed on June 2 and 3.”
‘A Great Feeling’
At the end of the day, all of the hard work and long hours stand to benefit the children of Newfoundland and Labrador, making the load that much lighter for all involved.
“Kids are a huge part of our future, a huge part of many of our lives – my wife and I are planning on having a child soon enough – and the Janeway is going to be a big part of our child’s life,” Sheerr says. “Whatever I can do to help further and brighten up the outlook as far as children are taken care of in this province, then that’s a great feeling.”
The 34th annual Janeway Telethon begins Saturday June 2nd and runs from 630 pm to 930 pm on NTV, and continues on Sunday June 3rd from 9 am to 7pm. For more information visit janewayfoundation.nf.ca, call 709-777-4640 or email [email protected]