Every Saturday and Sunday during the summer, when the sun is shining and the birds are singing, Danielle MacPherson hits the pavement to check out the deals waiting for her at the many neighbourhood yard sales that pop up each weekend. Given her passion for the hobby, Danielle recently decided to join her neighbours and set up a yard sale of her very own. But as a transitional care nurse at Scarborough Health Network (SHN), she wanted to make hers extra special, so she decided that all the money raised from the sale would go directly to support her unit and the patients she serves.
“Many of our transitional care patients can wait months and even years to enter long-term care homes, and there’s not a lot for them to do on the unit, especially since many get very few visitors,” shares Danielle. “I wanted to do something special for them. Instead of giving their throwaway items to a consignment shop, I asked my friends and family to donate them to my yard sale instead to help me raise money for the unit. Many people were so willing to help that they even opened their wallets and gave monetary donations!”
Danielle’s yard sale raised more than $160, and she’s using that extra cash to fund activities for the many elderly transitional care patients who pass their days at SHN’s General hospital, including puzzles, adult colouring books and crosswords, and even necessities like toiletries. She also hopes to help purchase additional personal music players and perhaps a smart tablet, specifically for those patients with Alzheimer’s. “It’s so amazing to see a patient’s eyes light up when we press play and they hear the music. It makes me so grateful for the opportunity to be a part of their care.”
When asked why she chose to support SHN through her yard sale, Danielle said that, at the end of the day, it all comes back to the patients. “When something as simple as a crossword can make someone’s whole day, there’s no question that I’m going to help make that happen. I love my unit and the work we do for our transitional care patients. I often feel like they are forgotten about, so I’m happy to do whatever I can to help make their patient experience the best it can possibly be. And this is something that extends to all of my coworkers in the unit – including our manager Meredith Depaulsen and Annette Harris, our Behavioural Specialist RN. They all go above-and-beyond in their work, and our leaders set a fantastic example for how we all should provide care for our patients.”
Danielle is one example of many SHN staff and physicians who are doing their part, in their own special way, to support our patients by giving back. Visit SHNFoundation.ca to learn more about how your support can make a difference for Scarborough’s patients and community hospitals.