In October I challenged my crew members to take on several PR projects for the Holiday Season.

The first one was to help local Law Enforcement throughout White County. Due to limited funds avaliable in each department, several law enforcement officers were without bullet-proof vests, or some of those who had them were outdated. I put together a team for that project, and they met — actually exceded our goal. We waited tables at the local Pizza Pro and gathered sponsors, and we were able to furnish 30 new vests for local law enforcement!

The second project was Christmas for Kids. We again waited tables for tips, and every single employee at NorthStar EMS donated either money or toys for this cause. Together we donated over 900 toys for needy children this season!

The third project was each shift “adopted” a senior citizen for Christmas. This project varied from giving canned foods to socks, robes, Bibles, etc. We sponsored 4 seniors and what a joy it was to see their faces when we delivered the gifts!

Last, but most certainly not least, during the Thanksgiving holiday our crews pitched in canned food, and NorthStar donated the Turkey for a Thanksgiving meal for a needy family. What we discovered was that when we took the meal to them on Thanksgivng was that there was going to be a need at Christmas as well. This family was a grandmother raising her 6 grandchildren of ages ranging from 2 years old to 15 years old. The children’s parents had been sent to jail, and to keep these children from being separated the grandmother took them in. Again our crews came together and donated gifts and food. We also involved the White County Sheriff department in this project as well. We asked each child for a “want” list. To our suprise the children’s list consisted of mostly clothes and 2 toys each. It broke our hearts to see young children in that situation, as it was not their fault. The grandmother asked for a set of pots and pans to help furnish meals for her grandchildren. Together with the Sheriff’s department, we were able to furnish the entire want and need list of each child and grandmother.

I wanted to share these stories, because as you all know, we are not in this business just for patient care, but we at NorthStar EMS believe in giving back to our community. I am so proud that we had the means to help in so many different ways this holiday season for people less fortunate than ourselves. I am proud of our employees who unselfishly gave to more than just their own families. I hope many others will be touched by these stories.

NorthStar EMS team at EMS 2008 Conference in Hot Springs

NorthStar EMS team at EMS 2008 Conference in Hot Springs

From our EMS family to yours Happy Holidays!!

Tonia Hale
Operations Director
Northstar EMS