Over the past few months, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services banned nonessential visitors, including family and friends, from visiting assisted-living and nursing-care communities. The role of nurses in communities like Heritage Village Senior Center in Mesa took on even greater importance under the COVID-19 lockdown, as these professionals care for the health and well-being of those most vulnerable among us.
Amy Shuckhart, owner of Scottsdale-based Amalyn Consulting and Dawnyel Smink, president of Tempe-based Canyon Lands Insurance, teamed up to recognize the critical role these senior living nurses are playing during the global pandemic. On May 21, the two friends and colleagues surprised the nursing staff at Heritage Village Senior Living Facility in Mesa with a donation of $4,000 in gift cards they have been buying from local small businesses over the past few months. Each of the 80 Heritage Village nurses received a gift card for $50 to treat themselves to products or services from places like Los Sombreros, Ling & Louie’s, Daily Jam, Zesty Zeeks, Eggstasy, and Alamo Drafthouse.
A Heritage Village representative said it has been so hard for these nurses right now and that they appreciated the gesture and the recognition.
“There are so many unsung heroes in our community putting themselves at risk to care for others, and we wanted to find a way to show our appreciation for their dedication during a very difficult situation,” says Shuckhart. “This was a way we could support small businesses by buying gift cards, then pass those gift cards on to say thank you to these nurses for all that they do.”
The two business owners have made other such donations to other senior centers, grocery store workers, and those in need of a little help.
“Sometimes doing small acts of kindness starts a ripple effect,” says Smink. “People get swept up in how good it feels to help others, even in a small, simple way. And like a snowball, our efforts have inspired others to do the same, and the impact has grown immensely. This is how we know we will get through this together.”
Amalyn Consulting is a boutique insurance advisory firm, specializing creating and implementing employee benefit programs since 2011. Canyon Lands Insurance is a nationwide group of insurance agents headquartered in Mesa AZ.