A season of giving, gratitude | TheUnion.com

A season of giving, gratitude

Daniel Swartzendruber, SNMH Foundation board president, center, pins new donors to the Remember Me campaign: Howard Levine and Judy Bagley.
Submitted Photo |

A heartbeat, comforting meal, and baby’s first cry all have something in common. They are the result of incredible generosity from people giving in support of Dignity Health Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital. Because of this generosity, our community hospital has a robust cardiac program, meals for cancer patients struggling through recovery, equipment to help bring new life into the world, and much more.

It is at this time of year we tend to think about the things for which we are most grateful. Family, health and jobs tend to be at the top of most people’s list. We are fortunate to live in a rural community where both preventive and emergency health needs can be taken care of quickly. Not all rural communities are so lucky.

This success can largely be attributed to the people and businesses working with Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital (SNMH) to ensure the very best patient care possible. One of SNMH Foundation’s roles is to serve as a conduit to help communicate our hospital’s most essential health care needs to an interested community. When that happens we see tremendous philanthropic results such as the 20 funded projects last year benefiting the cardiac, surgery, emergency, Women’s Imaging, critical care, nursing, and cancer departments.

“Every time that a community member gives to the SNMH Foundation, it enhances the services that we can provide for our community. It’s an incredible synergy and we simply can’t thank donors enough,” shared Katherine A. Medeiros, president/CEO at SNMH.

The Hospital Foundation recently launched Remember Me: The Face behind Dementia, a campaign to assist Alzheimer’s and dementia patients by seeking 1,000 people to give $100. This will help expand the Alzheimer’s Outreach Program in four key areas: crisis care, respite, the Yes I Can Caregiver Series, and, education and training. Fundraising efforts are also being directed to emergency and critical care equipment, cancer services, cardiac rehab and the early childhood literacy Read Me A Story program. With rapid advances in medical technology, as well as the growth of needs specific to patients, donations are of tremendous value to those served by SNMH.

“We live in a very generous and caring place,” said SNMH Foundation Executive Director Kimberly Parker. “As one might expect, gifts often come from grateful patients and their families, but a substantial number of our donors are people who see how our hospital has cared for so many in our community and want to be part of that.”

Doug Sowell, owner of Ernie’s Van and Storage, is very grateful for the care he received from the Cardiac Rehab department several years ago after undergoing two heart surgeries.

“I’m managing my disease in the most incredible way, and I feel so healthy, all because of Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital’s Cardiac Rehab,” Sowell said.

For those interested in giving to SNMH Foundation, there is no minimum gift requirement. For some, a single dollar is all they can afford to do, but they know every dollar helps. Others give in the four or five figure range. “Every amount touches a life and helps,” Parker said. “Gifts of all sizes are appreciated and needed.”

Donations may be directed to a specific effort such as the Emergency Department equipment or the Remember Me: The Face behind Dementia campaign; to a specific hospital department; or to SNMH Foundation’s area of greatest need fund. The Hospital Foundation Board determines where area of greatest need funds can make the most impact each year. Parker emphasized 100 percent of each gift goes where it is directed and all donations stay local.

For those interested in giving on a larger scale, there is the Red Rose Society. Currently over 260 individuals, couples, and businesses participate by giving $1,000 or more to become a Red Rose. In addition, a vibrant Community Partner program works with local businesses to match their interests with hospital need.

There are many ways to give, including, but not limited to, recurring gifts that can be charged through a credit or debit card, donations by check or credit card, or even gifts of stocks and securities. The SNMH Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation, so donations are tax deductible.

For more information about the SNMH Foundation or how to donate, visit the website at http://www.supportsierranevada.org or call the office at 530-477-9700.

“Giving is good for the heart, both figuratively and literally,” remarked Parker. “Whether it is the person needing outpatient services weekly or the most vulnerable and helpless among us, our community is helping to make a difference one person at a time.”

All physicians providing care for patients at SNMH are members of the medical staff and are independent practitioners, not employees of the hospital.

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