BJC gives back by investing in the community – 2/4/2019

Author: ROBERT S./Monday, February 04, 2019

Rich Liekweg

BJC | When you think of providing “health care,” what comes to mind? In the traditional sense, we often think of hospitals, emergency rooms, doctors offices and pharmacies. But as we think even more about it, we realize schools, homes, grocery stores, churches and community centers play a big role in the delivery of health care.

Health care today is all about meeting customers where they are. Health care is now delivered at home through your smartphone, at schools through clinics, in neighborhoods through mobile health care vehicles, etc. And it’s not just about clinical care. Health care and the health of a community is also about education, housing, jobs, access to healthy food and making healthy lifestyle choices.

At BJC, we embrace our role of providing care in new and innovative ways across the communities we serve. From free flu shots and health screenings to dedicated school nurses and even a flourishing garden on a city street corner, we are continuously developing new ways of providing health care.

One way we do this is through our BJC Book Brigade, where each spring BJC team members come together to purchase and deliver 25,000 books to rising third-graders that will help give them an educational boost during a pivotal point in their reading education. Look for more about the 2019 BJC Book Brigade on page 5, and see a video on BJCnet.

Another example is the BJC Scholars Fund that was created in response to regional community needs identified by the Ferguson Commission and For the Sake of All. Open to high school seniors planning to pursue a two- or four-year degree at a public Missouri or Illinois state college or university, the BJC Scholars Fund offers need-based awards of $10,000 per academic year.

In celebration of our 25th anniversary in 2018, we created a new program — “BJC Gives Back” — to give back to our communities with a donation to local organizations that share our mission of improving health, education, child/youth development, senior/disabled support or community-building.

We invited team members to nominate a charitable organization that they support, and we were moved to receive more than 100 applications. These applications were then evaluated by the St. Louis Community Foundation, which made recommendations on how to allocate a total of $25,000 among 13 of these deserving nominations.

We’re so pleased to announce the 13 nonprofits that were selected to receive donations, along with the team members who made the nominations. Full details are available on page 3, and a reception will be held this spring to present the donations to these organizations.

These types of examples of providing health care by investing in our communities, building new partnerships and promoting education are just a few of the many reasons I’m very proud to be a part of our BJC HealthCare team. Together, we are making medicine, health care and our communities even better.

Rich Liekweg, BJC president and CEO

Email me at RichL@bjc.org and follow me on Twitter @bjc_president.


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