#GivingTuesdayNow united millions of people around the world on May 5th, 2020 through donations of items, time, money and kind acts of generosity. In the face of a pandemic, individuals from over 145 countries chose to make others’ lives better. We saw this kindness ourselves at Chicago Methodist Senior Services.
CMSS wants to say thank you to all of the donors who made our Giving Tuesday Now such a success. We were able to raise $15,000, with another $5,000 matched from our Board of Directors! The money raised will go to purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) that has been hard to procure, and providing premium pay for staff working in high-risk environments due to COVID-19.
Since COVID-19 arrived in Chicago, our community has stepped up to donate not only money, but other things as well. Volunteers have hand-sewn and donated hundreds of protective face masks. Support has been wide-ranging, with groups like Swedish Hospital and Limitless Studios providing 3D Printed Face Shields, and a wonderful 99-year-old grandmother known as Grandma Park who sewed masks for the CMSS staff. We cannot say thank you enough for these donations that are helping to keep CMSS residents and staff safe.
On top of financial donations and masks, some people are also donating their voices. Coco from the volunteer organization Musicians on Call has performed at a distance several times for Wesley Place residents. One recent Friday, her booming voice greeted CMSS residents from outside their windows. Coco stood on Foster avenue in a red dress with a huge speaker next to her. She sang them “Ave Maria,” “Weeping Willow” and “These Boots Were Made For Walking.” Residents cheered from their windows, dozens of people stopped on the sidewalk to listen to her sing and others came out of their homes to watch. Coco also recently performed on Mother’s Day and residents were able to watch via live stream.
“Times of struggle bring out the best in people,” CMSS president and CEO Bill Lowe said. “The efforts of our staff and volunteers to provide socialization and celebration has enhanced the lives of residents.”
Thank you again to everyone who has helped CMSS, our staff and residents find ways to help us feel a wonderful sense of community and joy. In our community, every day feels like Giving Tuesday.