During Blizzard Alexandra, I reflected on the inspiring events held in our community recently, which the Unity Medical Center Foundation was proud to be a part of.
First, the inaugural Embracing Hope event held at St. John’s Catholic Church, spearheaded by Vonda Collette, had a wonderful turnout of 150 people. They listened to inspiring speakers and music, and took home a copy of Connie Berg’s Journaling Through Grief book as well as other resources. As we were enjoying desserts and refreshments afterward, I realized that this event gave attendees an appropriate time and place to discuss difficult things like terminal illness, addiction and death. These aren’t conversations I usually start with other community members, but it felt therapeutic to do so. I hope others felt the same way.
Secondly, we held our first hybrid Harvest Auction, a combination of an online silent auction and an in-person live auction with games and drawings. This was my first in-person Harvest Auction, so I learned a lot, but most importantly it was so fun to see people together in support of their rural health care facility. More information about
that event, including photos by freelance photographer Eric Hylden, is detailed on Pages 1 and 3.
The Foundation also participated in Giving Tuesday for the first time on Nov. 29. The national movement, which always falls on the Tuesday after Black Friday and Cyber Monday, has been around for 10 years but recently has fallen too close to the Harvest Auction for us to participate in both. This year, the calendar was a bit more open,
although results from Giving Tuesday weren’t available at the time this newsletter went to print.
Lastly, I wanted to highlight recent endowment gifts that the Foundation made to Unity Medical Center on behalf of our donors. Our quasi-endowments (created by our board as opposed to a donor) are relatively new and just started paying out this calendar year. In the fall Heartbeat newsletter, we detailed the purchase of a fetal heart monitor from our Patients Endowment. More recently, our Providers/Staff Endowment paid $1,000 toward a national OR Manager Conference attended by Unity nurses Kristen Pastorek and Denise Moe. In addition, our Programs Endowment paid $500 toward Unity’s 10-week weight loss program led by Dietician Rondee Feltman and another $500 toward the Tree of Lights Ceremony held at Unity on Dec. 4.