Christmas came a little early this year to Long Island Jewish Valley Stream. That’s because, for the seventh consecutive year, the Fraternal Order of Court Officers delivered hundreds of teddy bears to children who will spend this holiday season in the hospital.
“Each child who visits the hospital will receive a bear,” said Joseph Marino, MD, medical director, LIJ Valley Stream. “Visiting an emergency department can be a scary experience for a youngster. At this time of year, we see an uptick of sick children who come into the hospital. So, this is a nice thing that we can do to help ease their fears and anxieties – and send them away with a smile. From our perspective, we love to make people happy. First of all, it’s our mission to heal people. So if we prescribe the right medication and perform the right intervention while helping them leave with a smile, it opens up our hearts.”
The Fraternal Order of Court Officers is a New York State organization with 1,300 volunteer members. This is the 15th year the organization has held their teddy bear drive for hospitalized and less fortunate children.