TCMH employees donate more than 7,000 to foundation

Texas County Memorial Hospital employees were recently recognized for giving more than $47,000 to the TCMH Healthcare Foundation.

The employee members of the “Helping Hands” donor program received an engraved double leaf on the “tree of life,” the foundation gift recognition tree, after reaching the milestone.

The foundation also recognized all hospital employees with a barbecue lunch including some giveaways for the 125 employees that are “Helping Hands Partners.”

Helping Hands Partners began in July 2006 as a way for hospital employees to give back to the hospital. Through a set payroll deduction amount or through one-time giving, TCMH employees make donations to the foundation.

Helping Hands donations total about $600 per pay period, reaching more than $15,600 a year. Jay Gentry, director of the TCMH Healthcare Foundation, noted that with each pay period, the accumulated donations from employees continue to climb.

“The Helping Hands Partners donations are the cornerstone of the healthcare foundation,” Gentry said. “We are grateful for the continued and unwavering support of the foundation’s mission.”

Donations from employees are undesignated, meaning they go into the general fund of the foundation to help with educational scholarships for healthcare professionals, to support health-oriented community events and to assist with equipment or service needs for TCMH.

Foundation board members also utilize money from the program to help TCMH employees in crisis situations due circumstances like a family death or a medical emergency. In 2009 foundation board members agreed to set aside up to 30 percent of the Helping Hands donations to assist TCMH employees in need or in crisis situations.

“In an organization with over 400 employees, frequent situations arise where the employees are asked to help out others,” Gentry said. “The foundation provides a way for employees to help each other out when needed.”

Wes Murray, chief executive officer at TCMH, noted that TCMH employees have been known for their generosity to many community needs.

“It’s an honor to lead an organization where so many of the employees give back,” Murray said. “Our level of employee giving is indicative of our employees’ belief in what they do and where they work.”

Later this year, the Helping Hands Partners will receive an engraved stone under the tree of life. They will be the first to receive such recognition from the foundation for their giving efforts.

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