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Nurses and patients at St. Michael’s Hospital get an early Christmas surprise

Toronto, December 10, 2015

By Corinne Ton That

WestJetter helpers joined staff in the Labour and Delivery Unit
WestJetter helpers joined staff in the Labour and Delivery Unit on 15 Cardinal Carter. (Photo by Kendra Stephenson)

Unsuspecting nurses and clinicians received a “mini-miracle” on Dec. 9, when WestJet dropped by St. Michael’s Hospital with gifts.

WestJetters visited the Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit, Labour and Delivery Unit and Obstetrics and Gynecology Unit, handing out gift cards and doughnuts to staff. They also surprised a couple in the Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit with toys for their newborn baby Luka and two tickets for any destination within the WestJet network.

The surprise gifts were part of the company’s fourth annual Christmas Miracle campaign. This year, WestJet’s blue Santa and his WestJetter helpers travelled coast to coast, performing 12,000 random acts of kindness over 24 hours.

“We wanted to do something nice for nurses at St. Michael’s,” said Mackenzie Chu, marketing adviser at WestJet. “They perform miracles every day, and this is WestJet’s miracle for them.”

The company worked with a film crew to produce or a commercial showing people’s responses.

“I think it’s such a good idea what they’re doing, taking the time to come here and offer staff gifts,” said Catherine Heath, a nurse in the Birthing Centre. “It definitely helps lift their spirits during a busy time of year.”

In the ambulance bay outside St. Michael’s Emergency Department, a paramedic with Toronto Paramedic Services received a coffee gift card.

WestJet made 13 stops in cities around the world, including St. John’s, N.L., Quebec City, Vancouver, Yellowknife, New York City, Orlando, Fla., Montego Bay, Jamaica, and London.

Their “mini-miracles” included giving away hot beverages, shoveling sidewalks, helping the elderly with groceries and handing out umbrellas and blankets.

About St. Michael's Hospital

St. Michael’s Hospital provides compassionate care to all who enter its doors. The hospital also provides outstanding medical education to future health care professionals in 27 academic disciplines. Critical care and trauma, heart disease, neurosurgery, diabetes, cancer care, care of the homeless and global health are among the hospital’s recognized areas of expertise. Through the Keenan Research Centre and the Li Ka Shing International Healthcare Education Centre, which make up the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, research and education at St. Michael's Hospital are recognized and make an impact around the world. Founded in 1892, the hospital is fully affiliated with the University of Toronto.