Generous Donors Have Given More than $500,000 for COVID-19 Relief
Loyola Medicine has worked hard to meet the needs of the community over the past several months. There have been challenges, and yet, the generosity of so many is something to celebrate.
Our generous supporters have given more than $500,000 in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The Birck family, including Kay and her son Chris, made generous gifts to the COVID-19 Medical Response Fund and COVID-19 Colleague Assistance Fund, recognizing the critical importance of sustaining health care providers during this time. The COVID-19 Medical Response Fund supports initiatives such as the rental of ventilators, purchased personal protective equipment and technology for care providers to conduct virtual visits with patients. The Colleague Assistance Fund supports employees who experience sudden, urgent financial hardship. Kay and her late husband Michael have been generous to Loyola for decades. Their son Chris continues their tradition of involvement and meaningful giving. “Even before the coronavirus, health care has always had a special place in their [Kay and Michael] hearts and that has trickled down to me,” Chris Birck said.
In addition, we received in-kind gifts valued at more than $26,000 from friends and supporters, such as the Mullins family. Jack and Joan Mullins were involved with Loyola Medicine throughout their lives until they passed away in 2004 and 2016, respectively. Now, their 11 children and 22 grandchildren carry on the tradition. Two of those grandchildren, Jackie Vivirito and Vince Vivirito, co-chair the Loyola Children's Committee, a group that raises money for the department of pediatrics. The Vivirito family and their friend Dasha Dudacek graciously sewed hundreds of masks to help keep our littlest patients safe.
We are thankful for those who took the initiative of setting up a Meal Train, an online food donation program, organized on behalf of all three Loyola Medicine hospitals. Betsy Rochman, wife of grateful patient Randy Rochman, and her sister Sue Temple started one for Loyola University Medical Center. Dr. Teresa Navarrete, spouse of Dr. Eduardo Navarrete, chair of emergency medicine at Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, started one there. In total, thanks to their initiative and the support of many others, nearly 15,000 meals were provided to frontline caregivers. As Betsy Rochman shared, "We hope these lunches and dinners provided a welcome treat during some very tough days."
The support the community provided helped our dedicated physicians, nurses and colleagues make a difference in the lives Loyola Medicine has the privilege to serve.