Connecting Our Future Campaign

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They are the institutions that we entrust with our health and the health of our loved ones. Thursday, Rockford's three major hospitals announced a commitment to help improve the health of our community as a whole.

The presidents of Swedish American, Rockford Health System and OSF St. Anthony Medical Center announced a combined gift of $225,000 to the "Connecting our Future" campaign.

Burpee Museum of Natural History and the Discovery Center are working to raise $12.5 million that will be used to expand and connect the museums. New amenities at Burpee will include an exhibition hall for Jane the Dinosaur, a new gallery for traveling exhibits, a rooftop special events area and an outdoor education center.

Plans for the Discovery Center include an expanded tot spot, three new galleries and more classrooms. Hospital leaders say they collaborated because investing in Rockford is key.

The hospitals' combined gift is the third largest private donation so far. Woodward Governor donated $1 million and Supply Core donated $250,000. The campaign has also received several grants, including 970,000 from the federal government.