Commentary

Rainesford Alexandra: Helping nurses help patients

May 16, 2014 

The Monday Life, a nonprofit organization devoted to improving the patient environments of hospitalized children, has launched “Healing Campaigns,” a crowd-funding website that is the first of its kind. It is designed to meet the needs of nurses and patients quickly, enabling nurses to create and promote their own hospital projects online, which anyone can help fund.

The Monday Life is applying a project-based, crowd-funding model to improve children’s health, making it accessible, simple, and fast. The newfound ease not only allows nurses to make hospitals better with their own ideas, but also improves the healing process for children, making them happier and healthier. Campaigns at Duke Children’s Hospital and N.C. Children’s Hospital have been funded with incredible results. The first campaign took less than 24 hours to fund, and thousands of dollars have been raised.

“Healing Campaigns” can be used by any hospital in the country, and people can donate any amount to a project that catches their eye. From iPads to art supplies, “Healing Campaigns” highlights exactly what nurses need to put the well-being of their patients front and center.

Lee Arphai, a Health Unit Coordinator at UNC Healthcare Child Psychiatry Unit, recently used Healing Campaigns to fund board games, electronic games, and art supplies for patients.

“We sought to promote activities that are interactive, therapeutic, and distractive in nature – giving our patients another channel in which they can express themselves,” he said. “We found that games promote lessons in opening up, sharing, taking turns, and cultivating friendships.”

Arphai was also eager to note the simplicity of “Healing Campaigns,” saying it all it took was a little bit of time and a collaborative effort from my coworkers, and the result was overwhelming.

As founder and CEO of The Monday Life, Joey McMahon mentioned, “Nurses dont have time to fill out fifty-page grant proposals, but they do have incredible ideas to help their patients. This site helps to rapidly fund those ideas.” Other funded projects include musical instruments for music therapy at UNC Hospitals and a resource library of books and materials for an inpatient adolescent unit, making education, awareness, and even fun, part of the healing process.

“Healing Campaigns” is a simplifier, eliminating the need for never-ending grant forms. The less time spent on paperwork, the more kids can benefit. “Healing Campaigns” puts the focus where it belongs: On the patients. Kaushik Sahoo, a junior at Duke University who leads Technology for The Monday Life, emphasizes how user-friendly Healing Campaigns is: “Nurses ask. Donors support. Patients win. It is simple, and that’s how we designed the site.”

The Monday Life has a reputation for valuing the simple. The organization was built on encouraging people to give just one dollar, every Monday, to improve the lives and environments of pediatric patients. Through “Healing Campaigns ,” The Monday Life gives everyone the power of healing. The Monday Life proves a little bit of giving goes a long way.

To learn more, create a campaign, or donate, please visit healingcampaigns.org

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