Stay Safe, Stay Strong: A Symbol of Hope and Healing
Inspired by a call for positive statements on social media, friends Julie Dailey and Erin Weller created a design that incorporated some of those thoughts with a colorful daisy. That design became the basis for a T-shirt that was sold to raise money to support healthcare workers at Springfield hospitals. For each Daisy T-shirt sold, $10 was donated to the hospital foundations. Their kindness and hard work resulted in a donation of $1,840 to MMC Foundation.
A Special Thanks
The Foundation offers a special thank you to the staff at Green View Companies for hand-making 125 pink bows for the five hospital campuses and respiratory clinics of Memorial Health System. The pink bows complimented the pink Hearts for Healthcare Workers signs, shirts and car clings supporting our colleagues on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Grant in Action
Eve Fischberg, executive director of The Joy of Movement: Dance for Parkinson’s, has not let COVID-19 stop her from offering dance classes to people with Parkinson’s disease. Eve has produced 11 weekly videos in her home and posted them on YouTube so class participants can continue to sharpen their dancing skills, which benefits their balance, flexibility, functional movement and endurance. Dancing also engages cognitive skills and elevates mood.
“We continue to use specific themes for each quarter, as I am trying to keep the experience as normalized for our dancers as possible,” Eve said. “This quarter our theme is ‘Dancing through the Decades,’ so I’m using music loved and requested by our dancers. I am adapting the vernacular dance styles of each period for our dancers and I have had to eliminate movement across the floor, due to practical and safety concerns. So, all dances are performed while seated or standing with the support of a chair.”
The Joy of Movement received a $2,400 grant from the Foundation in 2019.
A Head Start on Lifelong Learning
In November 2019, Family Maternity Suites staff began sending each baby born at MMC home with a gift: a book intended to spark a lifelong love of reading.
Five different titles are available, each one written and illustrated by Eric Carle, author of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar,” which has sold more than 50 million copies worldwide. The read-aloud books will be distributed until all 1,500 copies provided by Friends of Memorial Medical Center and Memorial Medical Center Foundation have run out.
The titles are “My Very First Book of Colors,” “My Very First Book of Words,” “My Very First Book of Numbers,” “My Very First Book of Shapes” and “My Very First Book of Animal Sounds.”
Each book comes with a label listing five reasons for parents to read to their newborns. The benefits of reading are soothing babies, developing memory skills, boosting creative thinking, building vocabulary and increasing attention span.
The book giveaway was initiated by Diane Rutledge, a former chair of the board of directors for MHS and MMC and a partner with District Leadership Solutions. She previously served as the superintendent of Springfield School District 186.
“I’ve always believed that the way everyone begins to build the foundation for a healthy and productive life begins with reading and the love for books and learning,” Rutledge said. “It’s my hope that families might continue the practice of adding books to their children’s libraries and reading to them regularly.”
Virtual Festival of Trees
To ensure the public’s health and safety, Memorial’s 2020 Festival of Trees went virtual. The online event was given a theme fitting for the year, A Season of Hope.
“Memorial Health System’s highest priority is the health and safety of our communities and that applies equally to Memorial’s Festival of Trees,” said Melissa Hansen Schmadeke, executive director of Memorial Medical Center Foundation. “Anyone, anywhere, at any time, was able to view online the amazing work of our decorators, who transformed trees and wreaths to reflect the theme of A Season of Hope.” The theme was chosen to encourage everyone that together we will conquer COVID-19.
Keeping the same timeframe as the in-person event, the viewing and people’s choice voting of the beautifully decorated trees and wreaths was available free of charge from November 21–29. Viewers were able to vote for their favorite designs in categories including Traditional, Kid-Friendly, Most Creative and Best Use of a Theme.
Memorial’s Festival of Tress is an annual event that raises money for health-related projects throughout central Illinois. Since 1989, the Festival of Trees has raised more than $5.9 million to fund those projects. Visit MemorialMedicalFoundation.com to learn more.