SPRINGFIELD, Ore. – Every year since 1979, dedicated PeaceHealth caregivers have organized a collection drive to provide all the ingredients for a full Thanksgiving dinner for hundreds of families facing financial, medical or other challenges. It is a months-long, PeaceHealth Mission-inspired effort that demands hundreds of volunteer hours and thousands of donated dollars. The project is one of PeaceHealth’s most cherished traditions in Lane County.
This year PeaceHealth will give away 800 Thanksgiving Baskets to families who have been referred by caregivers, charitable organizations and community members.
On Tuesday, Nov. 22, these local families, who have been notified in advance, will receive all the items for their Thanksgiving feast, including a turkey, stuffing and gravy mixes, canned yams, potatoes, vegetables and a pumpkin pie.
Distribution will take place outside the surgery entrance at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend.
“Rain or shine it’s a bright, happy day,” said Tina Noland, who has volunteered with the program for the past 14 years. She is a supply chain manager for the PeaceHealth Oregon network. “The families are so grateful, and many caregivers donate and volunteer year after year because it feels good to work together to help our community.”
Ever since the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace arrived in Eugene in 1936 to operate Sacred Heart Hospital, PeaceHealth employees have dedicated their time to helping the hungry and those less fortunate during the holiday season. The tradition of providing meals at Thanksgiving began in 1979, and the effort has grown from providing 50 baskets to 800 this year.
About PeaceHealth: PeaceHealth, based in Vancouver, Wash., is a not-for-profit Catholic health system offering care to communities in Washington, Oregon and Alaska. PeaceHealth has approximately 16,000 caregivers, a group practice with more than 900 providers and 10 medical centers serving both urban and rural communities throughout the Northwest. In 1890, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace founded what has become PeaceHealth. The Sisters shared expertise and transferred wisdom from one medical center to another, always finding the best way to serve the unmet need for healthcare in their communities. Today, PeaceHealth is the legacy of the founding Sisters and continues with a spirit of respect, stewardship, collaboration and social justice in fulfilling its Mission. Visit us online at peacehealth.org.