It started with gratitude: a simple idea to acknowledge and appreciate the dedication of health-care workers who serve. Faith Rivera, a young adult at Younger Generation (YG) Church in Arlington, Texas, United States, pitched the idea of offering Valentine’s appreciation gifts to all the frontline workers at Texas Health Mansfield, a hospital that opened recently.
“I wanted to start this project to thank the health-care workers for all they do, day in and day out,” Rivera said.
With help from students at Burton Adventist Academy, YG members collected personal, heartfelt notes and letters from students thanking frontline workers for all they continue to do to keep others safe and healthy. The notes were added to a collection of goodies, including warm drinks, sweets, and doughnuts for the hospital employees.
“Right now is a hard time for a lot of people, and health-care workers are always putting others’ needs and health above their own,” Rivera reflected. “I felt this was a great opportunity for our church to show our appreciation.”
The February 2021 snow and ice storms in Texas only temporarily postponed the efforts of YG members, who arrived at Texas Health Mansfield in the week following and went from floor to floor, unit to unit, sharing their gratitude.
“These past few months have been challenging for us with COVID-19, the winter storm, and opening a new hospital,” Kimberly Pieper, executive assistant to the president of Texas Health Mansfield, admitted. “Having YG come by and bring goodies brought a smile to our faces. We appreciate their support and their kindness.”
The young adult team from YG was greeted with warm smiles from ecstatic workers grateful to receive the gifts. Many joyful smiles and “thank yous” were shared as the group toured the hospital and shared some TLC with the health-care employees.
“It was awesome to have YG come by and visit us and our weekend team members during these challenging times,” Carine Moura, manager of strategy and marketing for Texas Health Mansfield, said. “We are thankful for their kindness and support!”
“It was so beautiful to serve a community of people who deserve it so much,” Iryna Brochu, a young adult photographer with YG, said. “I was honored to be there to capture it!”
“A simple idea of gratitude came to life as a group of young adults at YG acted upon it, expressing their love. It is beautiful to see how a community pulls together to cheer each other on and lift each other up through even the most challenging of seasons,” church leaders said.