Seven Manitobans had something to celebrate Tuesday morning, as the province announced the first winners of its Vax to Win lottery.
Winnipeggers Kerry Maskiew, Garth Deleske, and Trent Fingler, as well as Jacqueline Martel (Southern Health–Santé Sud health region), John Lyons (Prairie Mountain), Dustin McDuffe (Interlake – Eastern), and Bernell Lavallee (Northern Health) are each $100,000 richer after Tuesday’s draw.
Nearly $2 million in cash and scholarships have been put up as an incentive for Manitobans to get vaccinated.
Tuesday’s draw is the first of two: Manitobans aged 12 and up who have received at least one dose of vaccine on or before Aug. 2 are eligible for the first draw.
The second draw will be open to everyone 12 and up who’ve received two doses on or before Sept. 6.
“First and foremost I would like to thank the hundreds of thousands of people who have done their part and have been vaccinated as we responded to COVID-19 together,” said Crown services minister Jeff Wharton.
“I would like to congratulate not only the winners, but everyone who has been immunized – you have helped protect yourself, your loved ones and our province.”
Winner Trent Figler, 22, said he didn’t get vaccinated because of the prize draw.
“I got vaccinated because… I trust the scientific and medical personnel who have dedicated their life’s work to understanding and preventing these diseases,” he said.
“They understand it better than the vast majority of people on this planet, and they’re trying their absolute best to make it possible that we can return to some amount of normalcy.
“The amount of misinformation is not only a little irritating to just the person day-to-day, but it’s legitimately dangerous moving forward. If you look for misinformation, you’re going to find it.”
A total of six $100,000 prizes in Winnipeg and eight across the other Manitoba health regions will be awarded, as well as 20 draws for $25,000 scholarships for youth between 12-17.