Lakes Regional Healthcare Foundation


On behalf of the Lakes Regional Healthcare Foundation, I want to extend our heartfelt gratitude for your support of the Grape Escape!  You have demonstrated your commitment to our mission and we are deeply grateful for your contribution.  Together, we continue to make a difference in the Iowa Great Lakes to ensure access to quality healthcare.

Warmest regards, Sonja Hamm


Lakes Regional Healthcare Foundation provides an opportunity for friends and supporters to share in bringing health and wellness to people in the Iowa Great Lakes Region through charitable gifts.

Powered Stair Chair Fund

Thanks to generous Lakes Regional Healthcare (LRH) Foundation donors, an Emergency Response Vehicle was purchased to better allow paramedics and EMTs to get to patients in emergencies otherwise difficult to access, such as on the trails, in fields, and on the ice. Another difficulty in quickly, safely, and comfortably transporting patients to receive emergency care has been identified. Emergency caregivers often need to respond to situations where they must climb stairs to access the patients and no elevators are available. It is not a problem for our paramedics or other caregivers in an emergency to use stairs but can often be difficult and somewhat unsafe to transport the patients back down the stairs to get into the ambulance and to the hospital.

The solution is a Powered Stair Chair. It allows caregivers to transport patients more effectively with increased comfort and security for both the paramedics and the patient. The equipment allows caregivers to safely land ergonomically move patients up and down stairs, utilizing a powered track to help decrease the risk of caregiver injury and fatigue. It also has integrated head end and foot end lights to allow paramedics to easily see the environment around them and their patients. Also, as opposed to using cots, the chair reduces the amount a patient is tipped back while on the stairs. That, combined with the chair’s patient containment system, helps improve patient psychological and physical safety.

We would like your help to purchase five Powered Stair Chairs (one for each ambulance) at a total cost of $77,500. With your help, people in emergency situations can receive the care they need more safely and efficiently. Your contribution to the LRH Foundation Powered Stair Chairs Fund will go a long way in ensuring the safety of patients as they receive care. Whether you give $10, $100, $1,000 or $10,000, your gift is greatly appreciated.

Make a gift online now by clicking here and typing “Lakes Regional Healthcare” and “Powered Stair Chair Fund” in the notes. Or call Sonja Hamm at 712-336-8791.

Decrease Diabetes Fund

Most of us either struggle with or know someone dealing with cancer or heart disease. But did you know diabetes is common too? In fact, statistically there are roughly 1,800 people in Dickinson County that have diabetes. Of those, nearly 95% of them have type 2 diabetes. And of the remaining 16,000 Dickinson County residents that haven’t been diagnosed with diabetes, over 5,000 of them have prediabetes and most of them don’t even know it.

We would love to change the incidence of diabetes and prediabetes in Dickinson County and believe education is a key component to making this change. Lakes Regional Healthcare (LRH) Foundation is helping by raising funds for various educational projects in the community. One example is a 4-week diabetes prevention program for students within our community schools. The program is called Mileage Club and will help our county’s youth develop healthy habits to prevent type 2 diabetes. Gifts made to LRH Foundation will provide grants and educational tools to support the schools in this effort. Another example will be free or low-cost cooking classes, complete with take-home meals for Dickinson County residents. Ideas are also being discussed about programs to educate and help families move toward healthier eating and activity options.

Your contribution to Lakes Regional Healthcare Foundation’s Decrease Diabetes Fund will go a long way in ensuring residents and visitors in this area receive the education they need for better health. Whether you give $10, $100, $1,000 or $10,000, your gift is greatly appreciated.

Make a gift online now by clicking here and typing “Lakes Regional Healthcare” and “Decrease Diabetes Fund” in the notes. Or call Sonja Hamm at 712-336-8791.

Thank you for your help in improving the health of people in the Iowa Great Lakes!

Scholarship Endowment Fund

The United States is experiencing a shortage of healthcare professionals – physicians, nurses, and technologists – because a greater percentage of them are nearing retirement and fewer people are entering the health industry as a career. Lakes Regional Healthcare is working on increasing the supply of healthcare professionals in northwest Iowa by focusing on people who have grown up in the area, in anticipation that they will come back in time and provide care to patients at Lakes Regional Healthcare and directly benefit people in Dickinson County. Lakes Regional Healthcare is helping those interested in pursuing careers in healthcare by removing as many obstacles as possible. Lakes Regional Healthcare Foundation’s Scholarship Endowment Fund provides three types of annual scholarships – one for Dickinson County high school seniors, one for Dickinson County residents in an undergraduate program, and one for Lakes Regional Healthcare employees. Recently, the annual dollar value of available funds has been increased to $40,000. The desire is to grow the fund to be able to increase both the number of scholarships awarded and the dollar amounts of those scholarships.

Your gift of $1,000, $500, $100 or whatever amount is right for you, will help ensure people continue to receive quality, accessible healthcare in the future. You may also use your gift to honor or pay tribute to a dear friend or loved one.

Paige Petersen’s Scholarship Story

Sophia Butler’s Scholarship Story

You may download the Scholarship Endowment Fund Applications below:

LRH Foundation High School Scholarship Application 2024

LRH Foundation College Scholarship Application 2024

Hospice Fund

This fund is utilized to support a service that cares for people who have a terminal illness. Hospice works with patients and their families to maintain quality of life and support the patient’s loved ones during a difficult time.

Emergency Response Services Fund

You never know when you’re going to be in a medical emergency.  Lakes Regional Healthcare’s emergency medical team consists of experienced and knowledgeable staff specially trained in advanced trauma life support.  Your contribution to this fund will support services and equipment that helps to ensure residents and visitors in this area receive the emergency care they need.

Caring for Life Fund

This fund is utilized to support just-in-time support for Lakes Regional Healthcare patients and their families.  It is our “area of greatest need” fund and supports programs, services, and equipment in all areas of Lakes Regional Healthcare.

East Side Patio Memorial Gifts

Pavers and Seat Walls at Lakes Regional Healthcare’s East Side Patio engraved with your loved one’s name are wonderful ways to help Lakes Regional Healthcare Foundation while memorializing your loved one.



Donate online by clicking the “Donate” box above. Once there, select “Other” for the Avera facility, type “Lakes Regional Healthcare” in the “Other Avera Facility” box and make a donation in a matter of a couple minutes!

In Person

Call Lakes Regional Healthcare Foundation Executive Director Sonja Hamm at 712-336-8791 or email her at to set up a time to meet with her personally.


Send a check (made out to “Lakes Regional Healthcare Foundation”) to us at Lakes Regional Healthcare, Attention: Sonja Hamm, PO Box AB, Spirit Lake, IA 51360. Be sure to write in the memo section of the check what fund/area you want your gift to benefit. Please also enclose a note with your contact information, including your name, mailing address, email address, and phone number so we can follow up with you as needed.


Michael Sandy

Michael Sandy - Chairperson

Keith Deitering

Keith Deitering

Greta Gruys

Greta Gruys

Brent Harris

Brent Harris

Janelle Holter

Janelle Holter

Brad Jungers

Brad Jungers

John McMahon

John McMahon

Lina Moore

Linda Moore

Marsha Carlson

Marsha Carlson