The past few months have been hard on everyone for so many different reasons, but people in the Tampa Bay region have also come together like never before to support the staff and patients at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital.
“It’s inspirational to see how many community partners and people are stepping up at this time to make sure that our doctors and nurses and staff are being respected and taken care of as they should be during this stressful time,” says Deidra Church, the senior gift officer of special events for Johns Hopkins All Children’s Foundation.
Employees Giving Back
“We have a very robust employee giving program where employees have the opportunity to designate a portion of their paycheck to support fellow employees or our patients and their families in times of need,” explains Jenine Rabin, the executive vice president of Johns Hopkins All Children’s Foundation.
In past years, most of the major disbursements from the fund have been to help people recover from hurricane losses, but the COVID-19 crisis has meant a loss of income for many employees’ families. Through the employee driven funds and additional monies and in-kind donations supplied by community members and local businesses, Johns Hopkins All Children’s has been able to provide a weekly meal for on-site staff every Friday. The program has also funded the donation of weekly bags of groceries to 3,449 employees (feeding a total of 10,601 people
in their households) and as of July 15, assisted dozens of employees through the distribution of $72,000 of emergency grants.
“None of this would have been possible without the generosity and spirit of our own staff,” Rabin says. “And then, for us to be able to build upon that with external donations, it’s just incredible, and we are so appreciative.”
Many families of grateful patients have also been struggling during this time, and the Employee Helping Families fund has helped them in three ways.
First, since the Ronald McDonald House was forced to limit access, the Foundation was able to help fund hotel stays for families who needed to be near the hospital. A longtime Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals partner hotel chain enabled the Foundation to further offset room costs with a discounted rate. Second, the program has provided snack bags for families. Finally, there has been a meal ticket plan for free meals in the hospital’s cafeteria and other dining facilities.
“These families have been through so much and are experiencing such a scary time,” Rabin adds. “A simple act of kindness like a $10 cafeteria card, a bag of snacks or a cup of coffee can cause people to react like it’s the most special thing they have ever received. It is gratifying to see the heart of our hospital extend beyond the clinical expertise.”
Visit HopkinsAllChildrens.org/Giving to learn more about helping with your own donations.