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Baystate Medical Center employees pitch in to help equip Springfield students for new school year

August 18, 2015

“It’s like Christmas in August,” said John Doty.

That’s how the Brightwood Elementary School principal described the more than 160 large plastic storage bins piled up before him today (Aug. 18) at Baystate Medical Center, where employees gathered to present Springfield Public Schools principals with school supplies as part of the hospital’s annual “Adopt a Classroom” initiative.

“Baystate certainly knows what it takes to impact the community beyond its operating rooms,” he added.

The much-needed supplies – including colored markers, folders, spiral notebooks, glue sticks, Post-it Notes, pads and pencils, bottles of hand sanitizer, crayons and more – will benefit children attending early childhood education and elementary schools neighboring Baystate’s various community health center such as Brightwood, Margaret C. Ells, and Milton Bradley schools, as well as Lincoln Elementary, adjacent to Baystate Medical Center on Chestnut Street and the German Gerena School on Birnie Avenue.

“In both education and health care, we are here to serve the people and our community. These generous gifts show teachers that you value what they do, and we appreciate all of your efforts and out-of-pocket expenses to gather so many supplies for teachers and their students,” said Kristen Hughes, principal of Milton Bradley School.

Several Springfield schools have established special relationships with Baystate Medical Center, with students participating in special learning activities at the teaching hospital, and Baystate employees donating time and materials to the students to support their learning and growth.

“Baystate is honored to partner with the community in so many ways, including our longstanding tradition of providing school supplies to children and teachers. It is fulfilling to know that we have made a difference in helping them to get the new school year off to a good start,” said Nancy Shendell-Falik, RN, senior vice president, chief operating officer, and chief nursing officer for Baystate Medical Center. “Thank you to all those Baystate employees who filled their plastic bins to the top and to those who worked so very hard in organizing this year’s Adopt a Classroom initiative.”

 Photo: From left to right, Janet Perez-Vergne, principal of Margaret C. Ells School; Nancy Shendell-Falik, RN, senior vice president, chief operating officer, and chief nursing officer for Baystate Medical Center; and John Doty, principal, Brightwood Elementary School, at Baystate's annual Adopt a Classroom initiative held on Aug. 18.