MaineGeneral asks employees to keep their “why” in mind as they do their work of caring for those we serve. Our why is what compels us to do and be our best for every patient, every time. In Philanthropy, our collective why in raising funds to support our birth to end-of-life programs and services is that we want for your family what we want for our own. For my sparkly eyed, enchanting niece, my unconditionally supportive husband and my remarkable parents — I want access to the best in quality, compassionate health care in every season of life.
When it comes right down to it, our personal intersections with the health care system are inevitable. We are human — we bruise, we break, we give birth; we live and, eventually, we wear our age in various health-related ways.
The Alfond Center for Health has been open for two years now. In that short time, we’ve seen lives changed and stories rewritten. I have sat bedside, chatted with and, without knowing it, said goodbye to a dear friend one final time. I’ve camped out in the maternity waiting room late into the night, eagerly anticipating the arrival of my best friend’s first baby who, just a month ago, toddled his way around my neighborhood with his equally toddling sick-kick, Elmo, to trick-or-treat. Time is passing impossibly quickly.
I’ve seen our friends and supporters navigate vulnerable journeys, coming to us without speech or mobility and leaving us with words of thanks as they walk out the door and back into active lives. And I’ve seen the heavy shoulders of a family in mourning a loved one succumbed to the fragility of age and finally let go.
Perhaps one of these stories is also yours — perhaps it’s your grandmother, grandbaby, best friend or dad. Perhaps it was your lifelong partner-in-crime who was gifted more anniversaries as a result of care received right here in our communities.
Read about one of many families that had their “you never know when” moment when both unexpectedly wound up in our care just days apart. You’ll dive into pages filled with pink-clad people, whose faces represent that same reality — that you never know when — or in whom — breast cancer might surface. You’ll see what a lifetime of maintaining good health looks like when you meet some incredible members of MaineGeneral’s retirement community, Granite Hill Estates, where decades-long love stories, humor and wisdom abound. And you’ll read about some remarkable efforts undertaken by local heroes who put their “why” into action, using their talents to raise funds in support of care their loved ones needed and others will, too.
There’s a wonderful, subtle continuity to all these stories — the common thread is community. The Walk for Hope, Granite Hill, those who host events on behalf of health in our area, families who find themselves in our keeping…clearly no one walks this road alone.
For me, my “why” is my family — both related and chosen. I believe your family is my family is our family as a Kennebec Valley community and I believe that care given is care received — today, tomorrow or years down the line. For Nicole, it’s her boys, her parents and all the people who have been a part of their story along the way. Whatever your why, we appreciate your support and the part it plays in creating an authentic community of caring.
With warmth and thanks,