“I believe most people know that story about the little boy who threw starfish back into the ocean to save them and the man who told him it wouldn’t make a difference since there were miles and miles of beach with starfish all along it; but the boy responded it would make a difference to this one as he threw it back into the ocean,” said Gary McEwen, Physical Therapist for St. Mary’s Hospital and Wellness Director for both St. Mary’s and Clearwater Valley hospitals. “This is the story that motivated our Starfish Project here at the hospitals”
This year’s wellness theme for the hospitals is “Making a Difference” and the hospital’s Wellness Committee developed a program call the Starfish Project. This charitable project is open to all employees from both hospitals and is totally voluntary; it ran from January through March and will run again from August through October. Employees who participate are asked to donate $10 (or $10 a month for three months) to the project. Much like a 50/50 contest, the winner will get to keep 50 percent of the pot and will donate the remaining 50 percent to a charity of their choice. St. Mary’s Hospital and the Foundation at Clearwater Valley Hospital matched the funds earned.
A random drawing was held last week at both facilities; the winner for St. Mary’s Hospital (who asked to remain anonymous) will receive $480 and will donate the same amount to the Wounded Warrior Fund. Christine McBee; the winner from Clearwater Valley Hospital won $310 and has chosen ICare, a local organization that provides various support to patients with cancer has her charity to also receive $310.
At the end of the next Starfish Project, winners will be asked to donate half of their winnings to a local food bank in any of the communities that SMH and CVHC serve.