Hospital employees donate over $31,000 to help buy patient care items.

May 18, 2018

Hospital employees donate over $31,000 to help buy patient care items.

LUDINGTON — Employees of Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital gave over $31,500 during the hospital’s recent annual Spirit Week fundraising campaign, and over the past 12 years have given over $500,000. The vast majority of the funds go toward patient care items at the Ludington Hospital, an aspect employees cite as a reason they give.

“What I have found most compelling about the opportunity to give back to my employer through the annual employee fundraising campaign is that I am able to see firsthand the impact it has on improving people’s lives,” said Brian Buter, a medical imaging technologist who currently serves as chairperson of the Together Employees Achieve More (T.E.A.M.) committee. T.E.A.M. is a volunteer group of employees that help to raise funds through internal campaigns for the hospital foundation. The group leads Spirit Week at the hospital each year, featuring games, prizes, food and fun while seeking to inspire employees to give.

“This year, our funds will be used to support the cancer patient assistance fund established by the Ludington Hospital foundation,” said Buter. “I personally know people who will be helped with this fund, and it’s satisfying to me to know that I am a part of providing that assistance. I think those who support T.E.A.M. agree that we’re in the health care field because we care about people. T.E.A.M. provides a way for us to show that caring spirit through philanthropy.”

Amy Lindenau, compliance and privacy analyst at the hospital and vice-chair of the T.E.A.M. committee agrees that the emphasis of T.E.A.M. is on enhancing patient experiences, but discusses the group’s sponsorship of employee activities and comfort items as well.

“For me, the appeal of giving is seeing all of the little things that add up to enhanced experiences for our patients,” Lindenau said. “Last year, we were able to provide electronic door openers in the cancer center. This is a small improvement that makes a big difference for our patients.”

“I also enjoy sponsoring fun activities for employees that help to make Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital a great place to work,” said Lindenau. “We provide treats to the departments at Easter, Halloween, and Christmas; hold contests, and this year helped to sponsor a relaxation room for staff with massage chairs that can be used on breaks and lunch periods. Philanthropy doesn’t have to be one or two people making huge gifts. It can be many people consistently making small gifts and accomplishing the same outcome. Raising over $550,000 in twelve years is a fantastic accomplishment, and I’m proud to be part of that.”

Since T.E.A.M.’s inception in 2005, employees have raised $572,704. Each year the T.E.A.M. committee, comprised of individuals representing various departments and areas of the hospital, review funding requests submitted by employees and vote to approve what will be funded. Items that directly impact patient comfort, safety, quality, and care are given priority. All of the funds raised through T.E.A.M. stay local and directly benefit the local hospital and its patients.

“Some of the major items funded by our T.E.A.M. committee over the years include patient room renovations and furniture, infant swaddle sleep sacks given to each new family to promote safe sleep, vein finders to improve ease of IV starts and lab draws, new furniture and equipment in our laboratory, renovation of endoscopy suites, funding for the Family Birthing Center, surgical equipment, automatic door openers, and patient relief programs such as the cancer patient assistance fund,” said Kaley Petersen, director of foundation and community services at  Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital.

“I know of no other employee group that gives back a portion of their earnings to benefit customers of its employer,” Petersen stated. “It’s a fantastic culture to work within, knowing that people are choosing to give because they truly care. Our employees want the very best for our patients.”

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