We recently did a series on the #RAHolidayKindness acts our staff busied themselves with during the holidays. Our staff were certainly not the only ones getting kind this holiday season, though. Supporter Brian Myers used Random Acts funding to help with Health Wagon’s first annual patient Christmas party.
Health Wagon is Southwest Virginia’s only free, “safety net” health clinic. Their mission “is to provide compassionate, quality medical care to the medically underserved in the mountains of Appalachia.” They have been carrying out this mission since 1980. As of 2013, Health Wagon cares for over 11,000 patients each year. Thanks to Health Wagon, these patients receive important healthcare that they otherwise would not be able to access.
Patient Christmas Party
With Random Acts’ help, Brian contributed to the holiday giving by purchasing shampoo, bar soap, toothbrushes, and toothpaste for Health Wagon patients. He reported back that the Christmas party was a huge success- over 350 patients showed up to take part in the fun! In addition to a hot meal at the party, attendees also received several gifts to help themselves stay warm and healthy this winter. The United Breast Cancer Foundation donated hygiene supplies, clothing, adult coats and 65 new mattresses to be distributed to patients. Children’s coats and food boxes for patients were also available due to funding from The Aetna Foundation.
Health Wagon’s Executive Director, Dr. Teresa Tyson, was excited for the chance to make the annual patient Christmas party a reality: “One of my dreams for the Health Wagon was to start the tradition of an annual patient Christmas party for Health Wagon patients and the community. During the season of giving, it is an opportunity for us to give back to the most vulnerable and indigent patients in Central Appalachia with new mattresses, a warm meal, coats, gloves and hats for winter, hygiene items and Blessing Boxes – food boxes for each patient to take home.”
We are so thankful for the work that Health Wagon does. It was a pleasure to join forces to help make Health Wagon’s annual patient Christmas party a reality!