While many of us struggle to accomplish allthe holiday preparation goals we set for ourselves, PAH Skilled Care Center (SCC) AdministratorKathy Magnes,BSN,RN, NHA, goes way above and beyond the official call of personal and professinoal duty when itcomes to giving for the holidays. This year, likeevery holiday season for almost a decade, Magnes collected items donated from generousPAH employees for the homeless. Donations, which include much-neededtoiletries, non-perishable snack foods and clothing – were divided to bedistributed via festive gift bags. Come early Christmas morning, Magnes,with family in tow, delivers the bags to the homeless throughout the PAH neighborhood.
“Inthe past few years, donations have grown tremendously,” said Magnes. “They arenot just from Pennsylvania Hospital staff members, but even from strangers I’venever met at HUP who heard about the project. There’s one Pennsylvania HospitalEmployee who retired last year that I have never actually met. She called melast week to say she donates supplies to the project every year, and would makea special trip to the Skilled Care Center just to drop this year’s suppliesoff. I also have several dedicated donors who purchase things year-round, anddeliver them to me in December.”
Inspiredby Magnes’ level of commitment, SCC staff members decided they wanted to chipin and take over part of the project. Instead of Magnes having to take thesupplies home to create the bags, everything is now stored on the SCC and staffmembers have a blast getting together a few days before Christmas and puttingthe bags together.
Then,Magnes, her husband, their children – and sometimes even a few of theirchildren’s friends – come to the Hospital at 4 am on Christmas morning to pickup the bags and drive around Center City delivering them to the homeless.
Thefirst year, Magnes delivered ten – as she describes it, “somewhat skimpy bags.”Last year, the SCC team created 45 decidedly un-skimpy bags that the Magnes family was able to deliver. The bagsoffered much-appreciated Christmas cheer via a full range of gifts, from warmblankets and coats, to personal toiletries and gift cards for Wawa. “I’ve beenvery lucky,” said Magnus, “because the donors have been so generous, allowingme to better serve the homeless around Pennsylvania Hospital.