From UC HealthNews:
Nursing Students Help Homeless 'Winterize' for Pending Weather
When temperatures drop, we reach for the simple
things: hats, gloves, scarves, socks and the like. When you’re homeless,
however, the simple things can be far out of reach.
On Nov. 16,
UC nursing students extended a helping hand by distributing much-needed
winter items to Cincinnati’s homeless at the second annual "Winterize
Yourself” event, a program developed in partnership with the college’s
nursing student government and the local administration of a national
organization called Health Care for the Homeless.
For the 2012
event students, faculty and staff collected nearly 2,000 cold weather
accessories in a friendly competition between faculty/staff and
students. As in 2011, the student donations far exceeded their
competitors, but at the event, which this year was held at Our Daily
Bread soup kitchen and ministry in Over-the-Rhine, everyone joined
together to promote relevant health care education and assistance to the
Student representatives from the BSN, RN to BSN and
MSN programs also assisted faculty with health care screenings such as
blood pressure checks and administering flu vaccines.
students who participated in the event were thrilled, and touched by the
response of those who attended,” says faculty coordinator Rebecca Lee,
PhD, who also serves on the board of directors of Cincinnati Health
Network (CHN), a private, nonprofit organization established in 1986 to
coordinate local service and programs for medically underserved and
vulnerable population groups throughout Greater Cincinnati.
and senior BSN nursing student Michael Winter, president of the
college’s nursing tribunal, which is the undergraduate student governing
body, oversaw the college’s 2011 participation and stepped up to take
the lead again in 2012.
"I am incredibly proud of the
selflessness and generosity that our students, faculty, and staff
demonstrate each year and of the leadership that the tribunal executive
board represents. Community service has always been at the forefront of
my belief system and I am highly impressed with the impact students have
stated this event had on them.”
After witnessing an elderly
woman cry upon receiving a pair of socks, Kaitlin Caponi, who is
studying to be a family nurse practitioner, was moved to think about
homelessness in an entirely different context: "It hit me that a pack of
socks costs like 10 dollars and I don’t even think twice about buying
socks … but a pair of socks was all this woman wanted, and when she got
them it was as if she hit the lottery.
"It was truly heartwarming,” says Caponi.
a sentiment echoed by UC East BSN student Erica Rossignol, who knows
American Sign Language and provided care to a woman who was deaf.
says that the woman hadn’t been able to communicate with anyone in so
long that she kept signing over and over again, "Thank you.”
delivered over 100 gift bags with the collected items, Lee says "the
attendees and organizers were overwhelmed at the generosity of the
students, faculty and staff.”