Horizons Summer 2018

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Inspiring philanthropy. Changing lives. supportmercyfoundation.org

President’s Message I often think about how fortunate we are to partner with our amazing donors to effect positive change in our community and advance the mission of the Sisters of Mercy. Together we are meeting the needs of those served by our ministries and making our region healthier and stronger.

Jona Milo participates in wellness programs offered through the MS Achievement Center, while her husband, Don, benefits from the partners’ support group.

With Gratitude and Good Humor Lives Touched by the MS Achievement Center “When I talk about multiple sclerosis, I always start out by saying how lucky I am,” says Jona Milo, as she sits in her bright living room, recounting her story. She is gracious, with an endearing sense of humor. “I was diagnosed at secondary progressive, and that’s as bad as it gets,” Jona explains, “they don’t do any research for people like me because I’m on the short list to bedridden.” But Jona is grateful because she was diagnosed later in life, after several careers and many rich experiences.

At Mercy Foundation, gratitude is more than a sentiment, it is a culture. As you will read in this edition of Horizons, we are blessed to work with donors who are grateful for the chance to serve our community, those who are grateful for the transformative care they receive, and Sisters of Mercy who ensure that gratitude remains central to all our efforts. I would like to express my personal gratitude to Sister Eileen Enright, RSM, who after more than seven years of dedicated service as the President of Cristo Rey High School Sacramento, is stepping down. I wish her the best while she determines her next calling. Collaborating with Sister Eileen to make Cristo Rey what it is today has been fulfilling and inspirational for Continued on page 9

Jona isn’t just grateful for the time she had before her diagnosis, she is also thankful for the MS Achievement Center. The Center, which she attends one full day a week, has enriched her quality of life, and that of her husband Don, in so many ways since it opened four years ago. Continued on page 2


Partners in Philanthropy


Continued from cover

“I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2004. By 2007, I was in a chair. I was going into the hospital a lot for a while and I lost my ability to transfer [in and out of my wheelchair] because I wasn’t getting the physical therapy I needed.” Jona began physical therapy at a location next to the Achievement Center and happened to see a flyer for an MS wellness class. She attended it with a friend who was one of the first participants at the Achievement Center. Her friend encouraged Jona to sign up, and with some additional coaxing from a caregiver, she enrolled.

At first, Jona was daunted by the idea of a five hour commitment. MS can be a draining and fatiguing disease. With assurances that she could rest as needed, she agreed to give it her best shot. Her first day, she not only made it through all five hours of the program, she met people who would become friends for life. “I started at the Achievement Center in October 2014, and my downhill degeneration stopped. I am even a little bit stronger in my upper body now than I was when I started,” says Jona. With a combination of specialized physical therapy, yoga, Pilates, art therapy, games to maintain mental acuity, and socialization and support activities, a day at the Achievement Center provides an optimal mix for those living with MS. Participants are from 2

“For many people who go there, this is their day out. This is their social life,” says Don, “This gives them a reason to get out of bed and something to look forward to throughout the week.”

Jona enjoyed wheel chair ice skating during an MS Achievement Center outing. across Northern California, many traveling long distances to attend this unique program. They are every age, with various types and stages of MS, but they have become a family. “We’re all in the choppy water. Even though each one of us has our own separate little dinghy, we all have the same struggles,” Jona explains about the group, “I’m the second oldest person there. I’ve been some places and I’ve done some things, so I can speak from experience. In turn, the people who were diagnosed 30 years ago can teach me a lot.” Beyond the physically and mentally beneficial program, it is this sense of support and community that makes the Achievement Center such a special place.

For Don, the Achievement Center has also provided an amazing community. “When they started the support group for partners, I said to myself ‘I’m ready,’” explains Don. “I was ready to find out about other people, I was able to vent about some of my anxiety and anger, and I found out I wasn’t the only one.” The original support group for partners of the Achievement Center participants was comprised of nine men who met weekly for two and a half months. “We were total strangers,” recounts Don, “but that first session, after 30 minutes, there wasn’t a secret in the room. Then I realized this was really something I could participate in, and learn so much about other aspects of MS and what others were doing to make the best of a bad situation. It just turned out to be what everybody needed.” Three years later, Don is still an enthusiastic participant in the support group, which has grown and now meets monthly most of the year. Almost all of the original participants still attend and the group now includes several women “who add wonderful perspective,” says Don. “The support group has turned out to be one of the best things

the Achievement Center has done outside of the regular program for participants. I’ve become a disciple. As soon as I hear about someone new, I tell them they need to tell their wife or husband about the support group.” At the heart of the Achievement Center is its expert and dedicated staff. “You are working with people who love their work,” says Jona. “Brian Hutchinson was voted the #1 MS physical therapist in the United States by his peers, and he’s my coach. Lacey Sayre will walk through fire to attend to your needs. Tiffany Malone is hilarious, and when she turns counselor, she listens to you intently and she makes sure when you leave, you have a plan of action. She said to me, ‘every job I’ve ever had, everything I’ve ever studied, has

led me to this job now.’ That is pretty amazing.” Dr. John Schafer, renowned MS physician and director of Dignity Health’s MS Center had the original vision for the MS Achievement Center. Together with the outstanding staff there, he has helped to create a unique and extraordinary resource for those with MS. Dr. Schafer continues to be a tireless advocate for the Achievement Center, giving generously to support the program and inspiring others to do the same. Through the generosity of Mercy Foundation donors, the Achievement Center’s programming now extends far beyond its walls and includes a number of outings and activities. “I’m naturally given to cocooning,” admits Jona, “give me four cats, two

dogs and someone to drop off food, and I’d be fine. But the fact that I went bowling, ice skating, and I went to my first movie in over 20 years, that just shows you the impact the Achievement Center has had on my quality of life.” Jona and Don, like so many others who have benefitted from the Achievement Center, are deeply grateful for its presence in their lives. With generous community support, Mercy Foundation is able to defray the cost of the Achievement Center for participants, so that it is affordable to everyone, regardless of health insurance coverage or their ability to pay.

MS Achievement Center Grows with Your Support Thanks to the outstanding generosity of our donors, the MS Achievement Center has grown substantially since it began four years ago. There are now 85 individuals regularly attending day programs and nearly 600 more participating through adjunct activities. These include: • A Book Club

• Writing as Healing

• Music Therapy

• A Support Group for Loved Ones

• Numerous Recreational Outings Throughout the Year Additionally, the program is now reaching more people in Northern California living with MS. Participants from as far away as Monterey, Modesto, Truckee and Santa Rosa are benefitting from the Achievement Center’s unique programming through outreach wellness seminars held across the region. Since the MS Achievement Center is available to anyone with MS, regardless of where they receive their health care or their insurance coverage, the program now serves patients from Dignity Health, Kaiser, UC Davis, UC San Francisco and Sutter. The MS Achievement Center has also received substantial industry recognition for its work, such as the Labe C. Sheinberg Award for Best Work in Neurorehabilitation for its presentation about improving quality of life for MS Achievement Center participants. Mercy Foundation is honored to be the philanthropic partner of this wonderful program and deeply grateful to all those who have supported its 3 life-changing work.

The Sisters of Mercy


A Champion for Education, Sister Eileen Enright, RSM Retires from Cristo Rey High School In 1857, the Sisters of Mercy arrived in Sacramento and began instructing local children in the basement of St. Rose of Lima Church. Within the first year, the school room was full. The Sisters went on to establish St. Joseph High School and to teach throughout the Sacramento area.

Education for the underserved remains central to Mercy Foundation’s mission today and perhaps no one better exemplifies this enduring commitment than Sister Eileen Enright, RSM. Sister Eileen came to Cristo Rey High School in 2011 after decades of service as a teacher, principal and associate superintendent for Catholic schools of the Sacramento Diocese. At the time, Cristo Rey was struggling to become established. A passionate advocate for education with the “can-do” spirit of the Sisters of Mercy, Sister Eileen rolled up her sleeves, and got right to work. She had the vision to move the school to a larger campus, better suited to Cristo Rey’s unique blend of academics and real world career experience. With the assistance of generous donors, Cristo Rey students were attending class in their beautiful new building within four years. 4

Sister Eileen Enright, RSM is moving on from Cristo Rey High School after seven years as President.

During her time as President, Cristo Rey has grown, expanding from 230 students to 379. Graduation rates that started at 42% have steadily risen, and last year 100% of the senior class graduated. This means that Cristo Rey High School, which serves only low-income families, is now outperforming the national average by 20 percentage points. Perhaps most impressively, 96% of last year’s graduates went on to attend college or university. In 2016, Sister Eileen celebrated her jubilee as a Sister of Mercy, marking 50 years of consecrated life. Last year, after careful consideration, she decided to retire as President of Cristo Rey at the conclusion of the 2017/2018 school year, in order to reflect on what God is calling her to do next. Sister Eileen has been an inspiration,

a catalytic leader, a mentor and a friend to so many in the Cristo Rey community. “I think Sr. Eileen is extremely inspirational in that, as a parent, I think we all want something better for our kids. And here, her children are all the students at Cristo Rey,” says Mike Genovese, a generous donor and Mercy Foundation Board Member. “She has given students an opportunity they wouldn’t otherwise have to make a better life for themselves and their families.” “Sister Eileen never talks about the students without tears coming to her eyes,” says Sister Michelle Gorman, RSM, “that tells me how much she really loves her students and how much she relates to the importance of education for each and every one of them.” Mercy Foundation has been honored to work alongside Sister Eileen to galvanize the support of our generous community. “Any donor who has given to Cristo Rey should know it got spent properly,” explains Terry Street, Mercy Foundation board member and generous supporter of Cristo Rey. “A frugal Irish sister can be a rock star when she takes control of a checkbook, and Sister Eileen made sure that every dollar we raised was spent for the right reasons.” No matter what Sister Eileen chooses to do next, she will always be an important part of the Cristo Rey story and a much beloved member of the school community. Perhaps

Cristo Rey Board Chair, Jim Cuneo, put it best when he said, “we simply wouldn’t have a Cristo Rey High School without Sister Eileen.” Thank you, Sister Eileen, for your passionate commitment to Catholic education and the light of knowledge you have brought to so many young people in our community. We are blessed to have you in Sacramento!

Students are grateful for Sister Eileen and the opportunity to attend Cristo Rey High School.

Love Ties it All Together What does it mean to ‘love thy neighbor’? There are so many different expressions of neighborly love. It can be volunteering in your community, visiting an ill friend or even giving through Mercy Foundation. For Jan and Harry Campbell, it means a dedication to serving people in need of comfort, both with their time and their philanthropy. Jan worked for many years as the manager of Mercy Hospice before her retirement in 2012. After her own experience caring for her dying father, she knew she wanted to give the gift of a loving goodbye at home to more families. The comprehensive Mercy Hospice program is strongly rooted in the Sisters of Mercy mission to provide compassion and care for the sick and elderly. “It is so important to support the patient and the family

with families of all different faiths and cultures. It’s different for every family how they honor that journey. The hospice team wants to keep what is important to them at the center of this transition. They help them reach their goals, on their terms.”

In retirement, Jan and Harry Campbell balance family visits with their commitment to their community.

during that difficult time,” explains Jan, “losing someone can be very sad and scary, but the program is comprehensive, both medically and emotionally.” For Jan, the end of life is a meaningful time to provide support and comfort. It is an experience that brings strangers together like family and reveals the inherent beauty of compassion. “It is such a diverse community, and hospice staff works

Harry shares a similar dedication to serving the vulnerable. As a “Rock and Stock” volunteer, responsible for rocking babies and stocking the nursery at the Mercy San Juan Medical Center Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), he began giving his time 11 years ago. “At first, I did a lot of stocking of nursery supplies,” says Harry, “over time you build up a comfort factor with the nurses. Now I do very little stocking, and I hold babies almost the whole time.” He explains that frequently there are newborns in the unit whose families, for a variety of reasons, are unable to visit and hold them. “There’s always another baby to hold next. For developmental reasons, it’s so important to hold these Continued on page 10


Ministry News


Your Generosity at Work

When you make a gift to Mercy Foundation’s Area of Greatest Need, your support is distributed in the form of grants to help meet the most outstanding needs at each of the ministries we serve. Once a year, the Mercy Ministries Grants Committee selects a number of deserving projects across our ministries that align with the mission of the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Foundation and the intent of our generous donors. Twenty-four grants, totaling $1,167,481, were awarded for the 2017/2018 fiscal year. You made these amazing projects possible through your acts of kindness and generosity. On behalf of the many patients, families and communities who are benefitting this year from the Mercy Ministries Grant Program, we are deeply grateful for your gifts!

M e r c y 6

Anesthesia Workstation in the Family Birth Center at Methodist Hospital improves the ease and accuracy of dispensing medications during obstetrical surgical procedures. AvaSure Patient Video Monitoring System at Bruceville Terrace to monitor high-risk patients that need complex clinical services or psychological and behavioral management. Comfort Care Carts at Mercy San Juan Medical Center improve end-of-life care for patients and their families by providing bibles and prayer books in many languages, CD-players and music, battery-operated candles and quilts handmade by volunteers. Furnishings for June’s Place at Mercy McMahon Terrace complete the new memory care unit with the furniture and dÊcor needed to make residents feel at home. Hospital Noise Reduction Technology at Mercy Hospital of Folsom to monitor and thereby lower levels of noise around patient rooms, aiding in the recovery process and improving the patient experience.

Car Seat Program at Mercy San Juan Medical Center Motor vehicle crashes remain one of the leading causes of death for children aged 5 to 14. Passenger safety precautions for children is crucial to preventing trauma and tragedy, but for some families, car seat laws can be confusing and the expense of purchasing appropriate seats for their children can be prohibitive. With your support, Mercy San Juan Medical Center is able to offer car seats and education on child passenger safety to low-income and non-English speaking families throughout Sacramento County.

Integrative Medicine Plan & Training for the New Integrative Medicine Program at the Dignity Health Cancer Institute, aimed at supporting patients undergoing cancer treatment to provide complementary and alternative treatments to alleviate discomfort and better manage side effects. Mechanical Chest Compression Devices at Mercy General Hospital provide more effective CPR for patients experiencing cardiac arrest, thereby improving their chances of recovery.

Dignity Health Heart & Vascular Institute Home Monitoring Equipment If you were informed that you had an increased risk of heart failure, you would likely follow all the recommended guidelines to lower that risk. For patients with low income, however, purchasing a weight scale or a blood pressure cuff can be a financial hurdle to managing their health on a daily basis. Through the generosity of donors like you, the Dignity Health Heart & Vascular Institute is providing equipment to enable lowincome participants in its CHAMP program to monitor their weight and blood pressure at home. This program works closely with patients at high risk of heart failure to help them live longer, healthier lives.

Medical Director for the Developing Integrative Medicine Program at Dignity Health Cancer Institute to help with program design, planning and consultation with patients. Mercy Housing to Establish the Leataata Floyd Student and Family Community Center to serve at-risk youth and families at the Sacramento City Unified School District’s lowest performing elementary school. The Center aims to address early childhood trauma among students, chronic absenteeism and low community involvement in the school. Mercy Pedalers Program establishes a new Sisters of Mercy ministry to reach out to men and women in Sacramento experiencing homelessness, offer them basic refreshments, supplies and help connecting with existing services to improve their health and find stable housing. Music Ministry Program at Mercy General Hospital brings relief of pain and anxiety for patients through soothing music. Neonatal/Pediatric Video Laryngoscopy Equipment at Mercy San Juan Medical Center to enable quick and accurate placement of trachea tubes in very small infants and children who are experiencing difficulty breathing.

C o m p a s s i o n 7

Ministry News


G e n e r o s i t y 8

Respiratory Care Breathe Easy Initiative at Mercy General Hospital provided five new ventilation machines for patients having difficulty breathing. Site Rite System for IV Therapy Department at Mercy San Juan will enable the Vascular Access Team to place intravenous lines accurately and quickly, improving patient comfort and timely delivery of emergency care. Social Work & Post Discharge Follow-up at Mercy Hospital of Folsom to ensure high-risk patients get home safely, have access to their medications and remain in contact with their provider after their discharge from the hospital. Stop The Bleed Classes Taught by Mercy San Juan Trauma Administration Department in ten local schools in order to save lives in the event of a bleeding emergency. The program also supplies each school with emergency bags containing materials needed to slow bleeding. Support to Enable the Loaves & Fishes Dining Room to serve 15,000 hot, nutritious meals to hungry men, women and children experiencing homelessness in Sacramento. Transportation Support for Patients Undergoing Cancer Treatment at the Dignity Health Cancer Institute who otherwise would not be able to make it to their appointments due to financial, geographical or health challenges. Weekly Yoga Classes at the Dignity Health Medical Foundation’s Childrens’ Centers helps young people from low-income families improve awareness and connection to their bodies in order to recover from trauma.

New Care Boards for Patient Rooms at Methodist Hospital When a patient is experiencing pain and confusion, clear communication with care providers can provide comfort. Knowing which nurse is on duty, when their next dose of medication will be given, or if they need further tests can help alleviate anxiety and improve the overall patient experience. At Methodist Hospital, your support has provided new communication boards in every patient room. The new boards are easier to read and provide a seamless transition for patients transferring from the Emergency Department or the ICU to regular patient rooms.

Scholarship Aid and Campus Ministry for Cristo Rey High School Families who send their children to Cristo Rey High School are striving for a better future. They want their sons and daughters to reach their potential with an excellent Catholic education and a life-changing college degree. Serving only low-income families, 98% of Cristo Rey students need financial aid to help pay the yearly tuition of $2,300. Your generosity is helping extremely disadvantaged and deserving students in Sacramento access a rigorous, collegepreparatory education. This grant also enables students to build strong relationships with their peers, God and themselves during yearly retreats.

Support to Subsidize the Cost of Wellness Programs at the Multiple Sclerosis Achievement Center For people living with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), life can feel like a slow slide into isolation and illness. Many are forced to leave their careers and as much as friends and family members want to help, its difficult for them to understand the experience of having MS. At the MS Achievement Center, people with MS have a community that supports them to live their fullest life. Unique in Northern California, the Achievement Center provides a full day of exercise, activities, socialization and support to MS patients once a week. With generous

gifts from donors like you, the MS Achievement Center is able to make its program available at a reduced rate for those with low income or at no-cost for very low-income participants. By removing barriers to this kind of ongoing program, you give our neighbors with MS an opportunity for better health and hope for the future.

President’s Message (continued) donors and Mercy Foundation alike. I would also like to thank our immediate past Chair, Terry Street, for his time, commitment and outstanding leadership in serving two consecutive terms as Mercy Foundation’s Chair of the Board of Trustees. As we begin our new fiscal year, I am pleased to announce and welcome our incoming Chair, Alan Shatzel, DO. Dr. Shatzel has been a dedicated board member for eight years and, like Terry, brings a steadfast commitment to carrying out the shared mission of the Sisters of Mercy and Mercy Foundation. Finally, we are most grateful to you, our generous family of supporters. With sincere thanks,

President and CEO


Partners in Philanthropy


Our Annual Physicians' Reception

Love Ties it All Together continued from page 5

infants. Although the nursing staff is constantly attending to the infants, they aren’t always able to sit and rock them for long periods of time. For babies who don’t have frequent family visits, volunteers bridge the gap.” Harry is moved by the heartfelt compassion he witnesses in the NICU every day. “One of the things that I’ve observed in the NICU over time is that the doctors, the nurses, the respiratory therapists,

From left: Dr. Richard Carvolth, Sister Bridget McCarthy, RSM, Dr. Robert Kahle, Laurie Harting and Kevin Duggan.

On April 25, Mercy Foundation held its annual Physicians’ Reception at Roxy Restaurant & Bar in Sacramento. As always, it was a pleasure to honor and celebrate our amazing doctors for all their hard work and dedication to caring for patients and families in our community. Our hearts are still full after sharing a wonderful evening together and honoring Mercy Foundation’s 2018 Physician Philanthropy Champion, Dr. Robert Kahle. His award was widely applauded by his colleagues and patients, all of whom greatly admire his skill and compassion as a physician. An amazing partner in philanthropy, Dr. Kahle has inspired patients and colleagues to support our health care ministry. He and his wife Janet have also been outstanding philanthropists themselves, contributing generously to the campaign to expand the Mercy San Juan Medical Center Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Thank you for inspiring philanthropy and changing lives.

Make a difference today To learn more about the many ways you can support the programs highlighted in this newsletter, and/or other programs and projects, please visit supportmercyfoundation.org 10

“I can’t count the number of times that mothers have stood there, tears streaming down their faces, and asked doctors when they can bring their baby home.” the development specialists, they all bring their skills, education and experience to the unit every day, but one of the things that ties all of that together is love. You can’t reach out and touch it, but you see it there in the way that staff interacts with patients,” recounts Harry. “I can’t count the number of times that mothers have stood there, tears streaming down their faces, and asked doctors when they can bring their baby home. The doctors always explain that there are a number of

things the baby has to do before they can be discharged and that the timeline can vary from baby to baby. But the way they explain that is in the most compassionate, loving way, like that is the first mother they’ve told even though they’ve done it a million times before.”

Want to leave your mark on the future?

Although the kinds of service they are drawn to lie at opposite ends of the cycle of life, Jan and Harry Campbell believe that both Mercy Hospice and the NICU represent something special about serving those in need. For both, it’s about demonstrating love for their neighbors in the Sacramento community. In addition to giving their time, they have also been exceptionally generous Mercy Foundation donors to benefit Mercy Hospice and the ongoing initiative to relocate and expand the NICU at Mercy San Juan. The current NICU is frequently filled beyond capacity as the unit “flexes up” to accommodate every fragile baby who comes to them for care. The new facility will not only enable Mercy San Juan to care for more tiny patients, it will also better accommodate parents who wish to remain with their children. Mercy Foundation is extremely fortunate to count Jan and Harry Campbell among our family of supporters. We are grateful to them for keeping the compassionate mission of the Sisters of Mercy alive and burning bright in our community.

Did you know when you designate retirement plan assets to your heirs, taxes can slice away as much as 65 percent before your loved ones see a penny? But if you are age 701/2 or over and make Mercy Foundation the beneficiary of your retirement plan, 100% benefits your chosen ministry tax-free. Consider leaving other, less tax-burdened assets to your heirs and leave your IRA or other retirement account to Mercy Foundation. • We receive a gift to help those in need for generations to come. • Your loved ones receive more from your remaining estate. Make your retirement account count forever. Please contact Mercy Foundation for additional information on how you and your family can benefit from this type of charitable gift by contacting Kevin Duggan at (916) 851-2703 or kevin.duggan@dignityhealth.org


Non Profit US Postage Paid Sacramento, CA Permit #296 3400 Data Drive Rancho Cordova, CA 95670 supportmercyfoundation.org

Mercy Foundation Board of Trustees Officers


Alan Shatzel, DO Chair

Gil A. Albiani Edmundo Castaneda Costanzo DiPerna, MD Roxanne Elliott Sister Eileen Enright, RSM Laurie Harting Nina Iliff Garry P. Maisel Janak Mehtani, MD Mark Read John Stevenson, MD Terence Street

Thomas Johnson Vice Chair Brenda Davis Secretary Michael T. Genovese Treasurer Sister Gabrielle Marie Jones, RSM Sisters of Mercy West Midwest President Designee Kevin B. Duggan Mercy Foundation President and CEO

Questions or comments about this newsletter? We welcome your feedback. Contact us at mercyfoundationsac@dignityhealth.org or (916) 851–2700 to share your comments or sign up for an electronic version of Horizons.


Thank You, Mercy Medical Group!

Mercy Medical Group held its 6th annual golf tournament at the Whitney Oaks Golf Club in Rocklin, raising nearly $25,000. Proceeds were designated through Mercy Foundation to benefit the following ministries: Cristo Rey High School Sacramento, Mather Veterans Village, and the Fight Against Human Trafficking. Thank you to Mercy Medical Group for their continued support, dedication and commitment to the Sisters of Mercy mission to help those in need!

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