Last week the Washington State Library (WSL) announced Mid-Columbia Libraries (MCL) was selected to receive a $3,000 grant to advance access to digital equity in the Mid-Columbia. Provided by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the funding will be used by the library to purchase personal protection equipment (PPE) to expand digital inclusion efforts and provide technical support, especially for workforce development and broadband availability.
MCL will use the grant to purchase hand sanitizer, face masks, sneeze guards, and other PPE supplies.
The WSL received the funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to support libraries in responding to the coronavirus pandemic. In March, Congress provided the federal agency a total of $50 million in the CARES Act to distribute to states and territories.
IMLS Director Crosby Kemper III said, “COVID-19 has not only created a public health emergency, but it has also created a deep need for trusted community information, education, and connection that our libraries and museums are designed to provide. Access to and use of all kinds of health, job, government, educational, and community resources are necessary to weathering the current situation, beginning efforts to reopen, and sustaining our institutions.”
“Federal funding for libraries in the CARES Act is a vote of confidence in libraries’ ability to deliver vital community services,” said Kyle Cox. “We are grateful for the support shown for libraries during this critical time. As we begin to prepare for curbside services and reopening, Mid-Columbia Libraries continues to look for creative and sustainable ways to empower our communities through library services. ”
Chuck DeGooyer, chief executive officer of the Tri-Cities Cancer Center the past 7 years, today announced his retirement, effective December 31, 2020. DeGooyer was an original leader in the creation and development of the Cancer Center in 1994, when the organization was formed as a partnership of the three Tri-Cities hospitals. DeGooyer left to work as an executive with the American Cancer Society for a period of 10 years, but returned to the Cancer Center to serve as CEO in 2013.
“Chuck has made an indelible mark on cancer care in the Tri-Cities, providing vision, leadership and inspiration to the entire cancer center organization,” said Reza Kaleel, chair of the Cancer Center board of governors. “We are grateful for Chuck’s dedication to guiding the organization the past 7 years.”
DeGooyer feels the timing is right to step away. “I’ve been a part of this amazing organization for close to two decades in total. I’m proud of all that has been accomplished in building this center into a world-class facility where our community can receive the cancer treatment and support they deserve close to home.”
DeGooyer has also been instrumental in the recent transition of the member structure of the Cancer Center. Earlier this year, Lourdes Health and Trios Health departed as members of the Cancer Center, leaving Kadlec as the sole not-for-profit member.
With this new member structure in the formative stages, the Tri-Cities Cancer Center board of governors will be working through defining the future structure of the center and starting the search for DeGooyer’s successor. The Cancer Center board has engaged an independent consulting group to help determine the best path forward.
Together with his wife Michelle, Chuck looks forward to retirement, to be able to spend more time with family and friends, especially their grandchildren. But he’ll certainly miss the people with whom he partnered to bring excellent cancer care to patients in the region. “My colleagues and our patients is what I’ll miss most. I look forward to seeing cancer care in our community continue to advance and grow to serve the needs of the Tri-Cities and surrounding region.”
First-Class Team. World-Class Treatment You Deserve. We are YOUR Tri-Cities Cancer Center. To learn more about the Tri-Cities Cancer Center, please visit www.tccancer.org.
On behalf of a fundholder at Three Rivers Community Foundation, the Knights Community Hospital Equipment Lend Program (KC Help) received a $40,000 donation to support their work. For over 20 years, KC Help has provided in-home medical equipment to residents across Benton and Franklin counties, at no cost.
“Our fundholders are all amazing and compassionate people, that’s why they work with 3RCF to plan their perpetual charitable giving,” says Abbey Cameron, Executive Director at Three Rivers Community Foundation. “Occasionally circumstances arise where a fundholder has an opportunity to make a major gift. In this case, the donor was clear they didn’t want any recognition. Instead, they wanted to highlight the services of 3RCF and the great work of KC Help. We applaud their generosity to a great organization like KC Help.”
Often, following a medical crisis or injury, an individual will be discharged but need special equipment to heal or function at home. Their doctors will prescribe equipment for their recovery that is not available through Medicare/Medicaid or the patient’s insurance. KC Help provides, free of charge or obligation, the necessary basic hospital-type equipment or physical limitation support equipment needed for convalescence or life enrichment. The program does not receive any federal or insurance funding, therefore, there are fewer restrictions. The only requirement is a medical need.
The program has grown, from helping a few people per month, to helping over 2400 people per year. Clients of KC Help range from children to the elderly who have chronic or terminally ill conditions. Supported heavily by volunteers and equipment donations from the community, the KC Help facility has a robust stock of hospital beds, wheelchairs, scooters, commodes, toilet risers, lift chairs, Hoyer lifts, bed trapezes, safety poles, walkers, canes, crutches, air mattresses, shower chairs, and transfer benches. Clients simply come to the KC Help facility in Pasco at 324 W. Margret St. to get what they need. If unable to come to the facility, KC Help will work with clients to deliver, setup, and pick up equipment.
The COVID-19 crisis caused a short disruption to their services, as KC Help closed for three weeks to upgrade their protocol to meet State and CDC guidelines for an essential service. This involved procuring PPE, establishing new procedures for equipment receiving and distribution, arranging curb-side service, signage, and most importantly setting up an enclosed trailer to fog all equipment coming into the facility so that equipment being subsequently distributed was sanitized free of the virus. KC Help has worked with care and ingenuity to maintain the safety of their clients, volunteers, and staff. KC Help was able to re-open quickly, so necessary medical equipment could get to those who needed it in this time of crisis.
Jerry Rhoads, CEO of KC Help, reflected: “KC Help has operated on a shoestring budget since its conception. So much of the credit goes to those who have supported us throughout the years. Like the gospel story of the loaves and the fishes, whenever we seem to be facing a hardship, someone like our current generous donor comes through to keep us able to stay afloat. I marvel at how we have grown to serve so many. This donation will help us retire a portion of our debt and provide us operating funds to weather this pandemic. KC Help is a community treasure. We are humbled to stand in service with you.”
To learn more about KC Help visit www.kchelp.org
Three Rivers Community Foundation assists charitably minded individuals with plans for perpetual giving as well as facilitating annual grant making to support our local nonprofit community. To learn more visit www.3rcf.org.
Email your press release and a photo to Austin Regimbal, Marketing & Communications Director. Press releases are posted in their entirety. This is a free benefit for members of the Tri-City Regional Chamber.