Sometimes, a kid’s bike can be too tempting to resist. “Whee,” said unit secretary Crystal McKenzie as she took one for a spin just outside a neonatal nursery at MUSC Children’s Hospital.
There are quite a few children’s goodies starting to pile up there, thanks to a group of nurses, technicians, secretaries and other people who work in the hospital’s neonatal nurseries. They’ve teamed up to help a single mother, Amanda Geiger, and her three kids through the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program. Geiger has had her hands full, especially given medical issues she faces with her 11-year-old son, Michael.
Taking part in the program is a tradition at MUSC, where last year, employees collected gifts for about 1,800 kids. Elizabeth Williams, quality and outcomes manager of the MUSC Health Blood and Marrow Transplant Program, runs the MUSC Angel Tree effort. “We’re the biggest contributor in the Lowcountry,” she said. “Between adopted angels, monetary donations and other toys people bring in, we impact the lives of about 2,000 children.”
Geiger’s kids should have a wonderful Christmas, thanks to Dixon’s group, and Geiger is grateful for the help. She’s a mother of three who works two jobs and has one day off a week – Sunday. And on that day, she takes her kids to church at the Salvation Army in the West Ashley area of Charleston.
“Ever since I walked in the door here, my life has changed,” she said. “It’s been the help I need, the extra push.”
Catch the Geigers at MUSC’s holiday parade Friday, December 2, at noon. They’ll be riding the first float in the parade.
Read more about her story in our News Center.