National Nurses Week holds special significance in 2020 in light of the ongoing struggle to fight COVID-19. The annual week of recognition is May 6-12, ending on Florence Nightingale’s birthday. And just as Nightingale thrived during a time of crisis, our nurses today stand on the frontline in the battle against this deadly virus.
Our team at Terryberry has been moved by the words of encouragement shared among healthcare workers through our 360 Recognition Platform. Staff in hospitals and clinics have come together to support, encourage and appreciate one another for their sacrifice and service during this time of crisis.
We'd like to highlight ways we can all show nurses some appreciation for all they’re doing to fight the coronavirus.
Give nurses a shout-out on social media
Whether you take to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, or any other social media site, nurses appreciate seeing your kind words (or funny tribute videos) during breaks or at home. Even though they may seem small, these little gestures and public affirmations go a long way.
Some hospitals and clinics have employee recognition programs for their nurses and staff. As a patient or caregiver, nurse appreciation takes on a special meaning. Ask your hospital staff if there are opportunities to give recognition to a team member who made a difference in your care.
Abide by social distancing guidelines
While not very public, this may be the most important thing you can individually do for nurses right now. Stopping the spread of COVID-19 prevents our hospitals from being overcrowded and lowers the danger to nurses. It may be a big change, but staying home is a small sacrifice compared to what our nurses are facing on a daily basis. Wear a mask when you need to go out. Or better yet, join the ranks of people who are making and distributing masks to ensure that everyone is protected.
Go shopping for a nurse
If you know a nurse, they probably haven’t had a lot of time recently to go to the grocery store. Give them one less thing to worry about. Have them send you a shopping list, or just pick up some essentials like toilet paper (when you can find it), paper towels, cleaning supplies, and foods you know they love. Drop if off at their door with a note of appreciation.
Participate in community initiatives
Many communities are rallying around their healthcare heroes and finding creative ways to show support. In West Michigan, where Terryberry is headquartered, a community-wide dance competition has been formed to raise support for local healthcare heroes. Join the efforts going on in your community. You can make a difference as an organization, a family, or an individual.
More ways to support nurses
Sometimes, the simplest things can be the most meaningful. If you know a nurse, even if you haven’t spoken in a while, give them a call or send a text. A short note of encouragement and appreciation may seem like a small gesture, but it may be the thing that brings a little light to a difficult day.
These are just a few ways you can show the nurses in your community that you recognize their commitment and bravery. A few more include:
- Donating medical supplies
- Paying for their parking
- Assisting with their childcare or eldercare
- Volunteering with the Red Cross (including virtual roles)
- Donating blood
Nurses have never wavered in their dedication and commitment to treat those infected with COVID-19. Many are working loads of overtime and fighting against long odds to keep patients alive. Let’s celebrate National Nurses Week this year by making them feel appreciated and by doing our small part in this fight.