Community involvement | Nursing Excellence | Salem Health
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Nursing and interprofessional community involvement

Nurses Shine On

This spirit of volunteerism is aligned with the mission, vision and values of Salem Health to support our community. Each year since 2010, designated money is donated to charitable organizations along with volunteerism by the members of our unit/department councils. Each year, over 25 local non-profit charity organizations are supported.

Several videos featuring nurses in volunteer roles are available on our Community Matters page.

Organizations served by Nurses Shine On in FY19 include:


Charity Selected

Reason Selected


Summer in the Streets

Orthopedics supported this charity in 2017 & 2018 and claimed it was very rewarding to see the benefits they provided for the underprivileged children and families with school supplies, money, and time. All the staff who participated in the past enjoyed themselves and were anxious to return this year to continue developing their community relations with the kids and their families.

Cardiac Rehab

Mended Hearts of Salem

This volunteer run program offers a Peer-to-peer support network for cardiac patients & their families, which mirrors the Cardiac Rehabilitation department’s mission and values. This year Cardiac Rehab Unit Council will be asking Mended Hearts about their interest to sponsor a community fund that will support members to be active in their health. This includes community 5k walks, health events, or other event registrations throughout the year.

Cath Lab

Bridgeway Adolescent Program

The Cath Lab unit council wanted to donate funds to help the adolescent population in the Salem area. Council chair Nancy expressed, “This charity does not necessarily connect with our patient population, but these children grow to become adults that may be served in our department. With this in mind, we would like to ensure this vulnerable population is supported with programs such as Bridgeway.”

CNA Unit Council

Simonka Place

CNA Unit Council chose Simonka Place due to the growing awareness of domestic violence and trafficking of women and children. Amy Nagelhout, council chair, stated, “Hospitals are one of the first contacts these victims are exposed to outside of their captors/spouses control, and we have the ability to disrupt the cycle of abuse and terror they experience.”


Union Gospel Mission

CVCU continuously chooses UGM as they care for patients from the mission and discharge them back to the mission. It is important to CVCU to support the services that care for our patients once they leave our charge.


H.O.M.E. Youth & Resource Center

Brandy Belling and fellow council members received a tour of the H.O.M.E. Drop In at 625 Union Street. At this location, H.O.M.E. works with at risk kids ages 11 to 17 years old to develop skills that will help them navigate the roads of life such as cooking, time management, studying and interviewing skills. The team also provides meals for homeless youth. HOME provides clothing for interviews and essential toiletry goods.

Brandy stated, I was thankful that such an organization exists (didn't know about HOME until this project) to aid our youth who need resources. We hope to work with them more in making a donation box in our ED break room.

Float Pool & Vascular Access

Salem Free Clinic

Float pool has been volunteering with Salem Free Clinics for the past 2 years in support of their mission of providing compassionate and quality health care to the uninsured. Float Pool and Vascular Access staff loves the opportunities and the wonderful people who work and volunteer for Salem Free Clinics. Community events serve those without medical insurance, such as providing free glucose checks. One woman was able to be treated by a medical provider at an event who had a critically high glucose reading. Float Pool and Vascular Access staff were also able to provide education to community members in Salem, hopefully averting an unnecessary hospital stay.

General Medical

Northwest HUB

Many of our patients are homeless/jobless. As a full service bicycle shop, bike reclamation program and training center, we love how this charity helps mobilize people in our community in need of transportation so they can find jobs, make appointments, and save time over walking. Northwest HUB reclaims bicycles that would otherwise be scrapped or end up in the landfill.

General Surgery

Habitat for Humanity

We have supported this charity since the beginning of “Nurses Shine On!” and would like to continue our support.



Comfort Care Blankets

This project is well received by everyone on the unit and has received much praise from patient’s family members. After surveying staff, it was evident that it was the most popular choice for this year as it has a very positive impact on our patients and their families.

Imaging Department

Liberty House

Many members of the Imaging Department Council have volunteered or coordinated events with Liberty House and it is an organization close to many of the council members’ hearts as a safe, comfortable, child-friendly environment for children and their families facing concerns of abuse, neglect, trauma, or grief.


Comfort Care Quilts

This project has been benefiting our dying patients since 2008. Once a month, our staff volunteer time to prepare handmade quilts to give to our patients on comfort care. Patients and families not only have a beautiful piece to enjoy while their loved one remains in the hospital, but also have a keepsake to remember them forever. This project has served hundreds of patients!

Inpatient Rehab

Marion Polk Food Share

The mission is to lead the fight to end hunger in Marion and Polk counties … because no one should be hungry.

This month, as with every month, more than 46,000 people – including 15,000 children – will access emergency food through the Marion-Polk Food Share partner network. This food may be a hot meal served at a shelter, a free community meal served at a church, or an emergency food box from a food pantry. This nutritious food will help children and adults learn, work and thrive.

Interventional Recovery Unit

Family Building Blocks

Interventional Recovery Unit staff felt strongly about supporting Family Building Blocks mission to end the cycle of abuse and neglect. FBB is committed to keeping children safe and families together, offering support for parents to form strong bonds with their children and increase their readiness for their future.

Infusion and Wound

St Francis Shelter

As a unit that often serves a lower social economic group, it was a natural choice to support St Francis Shelter, an organization that provides safe and stable housing and life skill support to help homeless families return to self-sufficiency.

Labor and Delivery

Hayden’s Helping Hands

Labor & Delivery staff have a longstanding relationship with Hayden’s Helping Hands, selecting them as their charity choice year after year and participating in their annual fundraising banquet in the fall. L&D Unit Council told us, “This charity does such important work for our population that experiences the unimaginable loss of stillbirth and has helped to assist many of our patients here in Labor and Delivery at Salem Health during their toughest times.”



Center for Hope and Safety

Mother Baby unit cares for women and their babies and many of these women have been victims of abuse or assault. Center for Hope & Safety offers a safe refuge and support to victims and survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and human trafficking. MBU wanted to extend their support to help care for these women and their families.

Medical Surgical

Willamette Humane Society

Willamette Humane Society's mission is to provide compassionate services to pets and people. Volunteers are vital to the day-to-day success of WHS and the well-being of the animals. Donations enable Willamette Humane Society (WHS) to rescue, rehabilitate, and find homes for thousands of animals every year.


Horses of Hope


NTCU was excited to support health, happiness and healing through horses that Horses of Hope provides to our community through an equine-based program. Their mission is to improve the lives of people living with physical, emotional, and behavioral challenges through innovative, accessible, safe and rewarding equine assisted programs of the highest quality.


Clinical Nutrition Council

Salem Harvest

Clinical Nutrition Council felt strongly about supporting Salem Harvest’s mission of building a compassionate community where neighbors help neighbors in a spirit of goodwill, where hungry families can gain self-sufficiency, where our urban and rural bounty is recognized and appreciated, and where simple, sustainable lifestyles are celebrated. Salem Harvest achieves their mission by connecting farmers and backyard growers with volunteer pickers to harvest fruits and vegetables that would otherwise go to waste.


Ike Box/Isaac’s Room

Much like the staff in PACU, Ike Box treats everyone who walks through their doors like family. Ike Box’s mission is to extend the family love and support to the young people in our community who have suffered from a shortage of it throughout their lives. They help divested young people build the capacity to rise to the challenges of life.


Boys & Girls Club, Athletic Program

It’s no surprise that the Pediatrics Unit Council chose a charity that supports and promotes the health and wellness of children in our community. The athletic programs provide boys and girls of all ages, regardless of their athletic ability, the opportunity to learn new skills and develop self-esteem, teamwork and leadership skills.



HOAP’s Day Center provides a hand up by giving homeless individuals the resources, support and skills they need to transition to stable and healthier lifestyles. This non-profit supports a great deal of PMC’s patient population, so they are proud to sponsor services such as outreach and advocacy, case management, crisis intervention and peer support services.

Prep and Recovery

Camp Odakoda

When asked why they chose Camp Odakoda, Mary Simon, Prep & Recovery Unit Council Chair cited her personal experiences with developmentally disabled kids and the challenges they face trying to “fit in” in this big crazy world. Camp Odakoda provides residential summer camps for children across the United States, and encourages campers to use critical thinking and scientific reasoning while exploring ideas of ethics, mutual respect and democracy.



Boys & Girls Club

Salem Cancer Institute unit council members have directly witnessed some of the benefits of Boys and Girls Club within some of their youth oncology patients. SCI therefore believes strongly in the mission of Boys & Girls clubs to inspire and enable all youth to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens through the development of a positive self-image and self-reliance. They save and change the lives of children and teens, by providing a safe, positive, and engaging environment and programs that prepare and inspire them to achieve Great Futures. SCi has witnessed the benefits of Boys and Girls Club for some of the children that are also their oncology patients.

SHMG Family Medicine

CASA – Court Appointed Special Advocates

SHMG Family Medicine council chose CASA in alignment with their own commitment to supporting whole families in the community. CASA volunteers are appointed by judges to ensure abused and neglected children are not lost in the overburdened legal system. They stay with the foster children until each case is closed and the child is placed in a safe, permanent home. For many children, a CASA is the only constant adult presence in their life. Funding is through State Grants, community donations and fundraising.


Participation in external professional boards and committees

Salem Health nurses proudly represent local and national organizations, including:

  • Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses, National and Mid-Willamette Chapters
  • Association for Nursing Professional Development – Northwest
  • Association of Nursing Professional Development
  • Association Foundation for Suicide Prevention
  • Mid-Valley Suicide Prevention Coalition, OR Action Coalition 
  • Salem Free ClinicOregon Nursing  Association
  • Capitol Manor
  • Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Society
  • Boys and Girls Club
  • Liberty House 
  • Northwest Organization 
  • Gilbert House
  • Northwest Organization of Nurse Executives
  • Oregon Nurse Staffing advisory Board
  • Deepwood Estates
  • Center for Hope and Safety