10/29/2013 11:26 EDT | Updated 01/23/2014 06:58 EST

Foundation gives $50 million to 5 Toronto hospitals for key projects

TORONTO - A family of Toronto philanthropists have made a mega donation to a number of the city's hospitals.

The Slaight Family Foundation is giving $50 million to five hospitals for projects that will improve outcomes for patients.

The money will be shared equally by Toronto General and Western Hospital, St. Michael's Hospital, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and Mount Sinai Hospital.

Gary Slaight says the foundation's hope is that these donations will spur others to support health care in their own communities.

The donations are earmarked for specific projects in the five hospitals receiving the funds.

The money will fund a doubling of the emergency department at St. Michael's Hospital, and support the purchase and operation of a full body MRI for Toronto General and Western Hospital.

Sunnybrook will use its share of the funding to support a PET-MRI imaging system that will allow for scalpel-less surgery to treat brain diseases such as dementia, stroke and Alzheimer's. Mount Sinai will expand its labour and delivery centre, but will also provide prenatal care and perinatal mental health outreach services to marginalized and vulnerable women.

The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health will create a centre focusing on understanding and treating youth experiencing severe mental illness and addictions.

"When we approached the hospitals with the idea of funding critical projects, we asked them what they needed in order to really make a difference for their patients," Gary Slaight said in a statement.

"The projects we selected together are truly extraordinary. We feel profoundly grateful to be in a position to provide these hospital gifts which we hope will benefit Torontonians for many years to come."