At St. Luke’s Health (SLH), we recognize that health care means much more than diagnosing and treating patients. It’s also about supporting the communities in which we serve, being involved outside the hospital walls and ensuring that we are doing all we can to make a positive impact on our community members’ lives. That’s what humankindness is all about: understanding that our shared connections as humans are what matter most and using these connections to help each other thrive. Kindness and inclusion form the foundation for our work, and our mission is based on caring for the whole person and creating healthy communities.
It Takes a Village
One of the important ways we uphold our mission is to team up with like-minded community partners—groups that want to help the people in our communities receive equal access to quality health care. Beyond health care, many people lack basic needs such as healthy food. According to the nonprofit Community Assistance Center, 16 percent of Montgomery County residents experience food insecurity, and many lack opportunities to help them live their best lives.
We realize we can’t immediately solve all the issues facing our communities, but we also know every step we take—whether big or small—puts us closer to reaching our goals and that our work shows the people around us that we care and are here to help however we can.
SLH The Woodlands Hospital and Lakeside Hospital are making notable progress toward supporting our communities in various ways.
Partnership with Interfaith of The Woodlands
I am proud to serve on the board of directors for Interfaith of The Woodlands, a nonprofit social service agency that provides programs and services to The Woodlands community and the surrounding area. We are honored to work alongside a team that shares our values and works toward the same goals by caring for others. Some of the events and initiatives we’ve partnered on include:
Serving Our Seniors: This biannual event helps senior residents live independently for as long as possible. Volunteers from SLH, Interfaith and The Woodlands Township work together to assist seniors with maintaining their homes and helping them with yard work and other tasks.
Interfaith of The Woodlands Community Clinic: This full-time health center, run by volunteers, provides a wide variety of medical and dental services, mental health counseling and social service support to residents of Montgomery County who do not have health insurance.
The Walk: This high-end fashion show and gala raises funding for Interfaith to help support community members in need. Services provided include help with homelessness, food, helping seniors age in place and more.
Interfaith also provides many other programs, including job coaching, a food pantry and other family and senior services.
Volunteer Opportunities for Team Members
In addition to assisting with Interfaith, SLH team members participate in many other volunteer events. This year has been designated the Year of Service, in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Not only does volunteering as a team help our employees’ well-being and build relationships, but it also allows us to embrace our mission of humankindness by increasing empathy and respect for our fellow community members. Some examples include:
Earth Day Greenup: Part of the Great American Cleanup initiative, this event helps to improve the health and beauty of our environment. Volunteers gather to pick up trash throughout the community’s parks, pathways and waterways.
Produce Rescue Center event: Teams of volunteers partner with the Montgomery County Food Bank to work with the Produce Rescue Center. The center brings truckloads of fresh, safe produce that would have gone to a landfill to the food bank, where volunteers separate it for either consumption or compost. Volunteers also deliver fresh produce to senior residents.
In April, the Chevron Championship Ladies Professional Golf Association Tour took place at the Club at Carlton Woods in The Woodlands to raise funds that help promote diversity, inclusion and education. SLH sponsored the 18th hole, with funds raised donated to the St. Luke’s Foundation to benefit our communities. We are also proud to present a portion of funds raised to Interfaith to help them further their mission.
We also sponsored a behind-the-scenes tour at the tournament for members of Girls Golf, the national junior golf program that focuses on encouraging girls to play the game of golf. Along with a group called First Tee, Girls Golf works to make the game of golf accessible to all. The ultimate goal is to help all girls have a safe and fun environment to learn about the game of golf and incorporate the five Es—enrich, energize, empower, engage and exercise—into all facets of their lives.
We’re All in This Together
These events are a sampling of the many ways we work to support our mission and show humankindness throughout our community. By helping each other, we become stronger, both as individuals and as communities.
SLH will continue looking for creative, meaningful ways to help the members of our communities—inside and outside the walls of our organization. It is my sincere hope that others in the community will join our mission and show compassion, generosity and kindness to all. Let’s raise each other up and make our communities—and our world—a better place for everyone.