It is better to give than to receive.
That certainly appears to be the sentiment of a White Rock businessman who celebrated his 73rd birthday in unique style on Tuesday, Oct. 12.
Manjit Lit donated $400,000 to four Lower Mainland charitable organizations, including the Peace Arch Hospital Foundation.
During a birthday luncheon held at Bombay Banquet Hall in Surrey, Lit – who is the owner of Litco Investments Corporation, a property development company – issued four cheques for $100,000 each to PAHF, Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation, BC Children’s Hospital Foundation and Progressive Intercultural Community Services (PICS) for Guru Nanak Diversity Village.
The Peace Arch Hospital donation was earmarked for mental health services.
Lit told Peace Arch News he was inspired to make the donations after watching news from around the world during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic and seeing others make donations of ambulances, hospital beds, oxygen cylinders and other vital equipment.
“This inspired me to help our local organizations like Surrey Memorial Hospital (and) Peace Arch Hospital who were dealing the most with COVID patients” he wrote in an email to Peace Arch News.
People’s mental health, has been particularly affected by the pandemic and by the fact that many were confined to their homes for long periods of time, Lit noted.
“Last week I met with a doctor dealing with mental health at Peach Arch Hospital, who was very happy, and said that it was very much a needed donation in this area as after COVID times, the percentage of (people who have been) mentally affected has gone up,” he wrote.
“I also wanted to encourage our local community to join others for donating for the good cause, so we did dollar to dollar matchup for both the foundations, and we collected more than two hundred thousand each and collectively since last year have collected close to $1M.”
Through the donations, Lit hopes to encourage more people to donate to local charities and foundations, including Surrey Memorial and Peace Arch Hospitals.
“So, I request at the end, to everybody to donate and support our local hospitals who need the most to help.”
Among those who attended the luncheon were Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum, MP Sukh Dhaliwal, MP Randeep Sarai, Labour Minister Harry Bains, and MLA Jinny Sims.