Northwell Relay: Casual for Cohen – turning small change into big results
Each year, thousands of employees choose to give back to Northwell by participating in Casual for Cohen, a fundraising event where you can wear jeans to work for one or two days, for the donation of $5 per day. What some may consider small change adds up to big results for Cohen Children’s Medical Center — a cause very close to all of our hearts, including Dotti Ward’s, operations manager in Northwell’s Office of the Chief Information Officer.
Personal connections, professional pride
Dotti’s connection to Cohen Children’s stems from her personal experience, when her daughter became very ill with a virus at three years old. She was treated at the hospital and as Dotti remembers, “The level of empathy, compassion and professionalism was exceptional. I walked through those doors with a very sick child – now she’s a very healthy, happy young woman. I almost lost her. They saved her life.”
Dotti leads the employee activity committee in Information Services. She spends a lot of her time coordinating fundraising initiatives and over the years has seen her colleagues go above and beyond many times. “Our department is very supportive, they’re 100% behind us and they do everything they can,” says Dotti.
Last year, the department held a charity basketball tournament around the same time as Casual for Cohen, so Dotti spoke to the team captains and they all agreed to donate the proceeds to help Cohen Children’s. For Dotti, that’s what employee giving is all about, connecting people and spreading the message — why it matters and what fundraising can achieve.
What matters most
Dotti regularly sees huge acts of generosity at Northwell, which she puts down to the “absolute pride and honor of doing what we do for our patient community.” It’s the same mix of professional pride and personal empathy she experienced from the hospital staff. They’re leaders in pediatric care, but they’re also mentors and friends.
As a nonprofit organization, to keep doing what we do, we rely on the support of our communities. We already go the extra mile, for colleagues, patients and families, but together we can make things even better. Through What matters most, our employee giving program, we can develop more life-changing treatments, strengthen morale and meet our collective mission.
We’re currently spreading that message across the organization with the What matters most Relay in the run-up to employee giving day on December 3. Clinicians can show support by wearing blue accents — socks, a tie, jewelry or any accents that align with departmental protocols.
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