Nov 04, 2021

Kern Valley Hospital Foundation celebrates success despite pandemic

What a beautiful fall day! It has certainly been a trying year for so many of us. Our health and well-being have been stressed and, yes, stretched to limits we didn’t realize we could reach. Resources for nonprofits have diminished and many businesses are still struggling to gain a solid foothold in our economy.

Take a few minutes and ask yourself, “What would I change if I had the will to do so? What risks am I willing to take even if the outcome is not certain?”

Now is the time to evaluate how we approach this life we call ours. We can grow from the experiences of the past one and a half years and gain new perspective if only we allow ourselves to take some risk. Acts of generosity and sharing will be rewarded in many untold ways. The kindness of others can be spread throughout a community and benefit those far beyond our line of sight. If not now, when is there a better time to start? 

Fall is time for making new plans for the holidays and a new year, saying goodbye to the sweltering summer heat and hopefully the wildland fires. Fall is the prelude for winter, nature slowing down a bit and patiently awaiting the arrival of the winter season. Fall is a time for family and friends to gather and be thankful for one another. In many cases, it is the only time families are all together at the same time. Take advantage of this time. It may not happen again in quite the same way.

When I began to write this monthly column, I really didn’t know where to begin. The Kern Valley Hospital Foundation has been very fortunate this past year, and we have the hard of work of our volunteers and donors to thank for that. While it has been a year of uncertainty, we still accomplished many of the goals we set for ourselves. Some of these goals do not tug at your heartstrings or are not always considered as important as others but nonetheless need to be reached.

Last April, Lisa Wyly and I sat outside the Mount Mesa pharmacy to “take back meds” from community members that no longer needed the prescription medications still in their possession. This program put together by the sheriff’s office, healthcare providers and pharmacists removed medications that could be misused or abused by others. We had a steady stream of cars and residents that participated and dropped off 40 pounds of medications. Let me repeat that:Wwe collected 40 pounds of pills and other medications that could have been abused by the patients, their families, or friends and neighbors. Certainly, benefitting those beyond our line of sight. Outstanding!

The foundation also participated in the COVID-19 vaccine clinics at the hospital. Through grant funds, we supplied the nurses and other medical professions lunches and water. The clinics were held outside and many days the heat was oppressive, and attitudes frayed at the edges. We owe a debt of gratitude for all the work they do and under the most stressful of circumstances. Taking a risk? Indeed, they did and still managed to stay sane.

So, this upcoming giving season, let’s keep in mind why we can succeed when others may fail. Let’s give thanks to the many that give of their time and energy and never look back. Let’s share what we have and hopefully reach more of those outside our line of sight.