The Lower Moyamensing Civic Association is making sure certain vital workers aren’t being forgotten.
The civic group, which encompasses the areas from Snyder to Oregon avenues and 7th to Broad streets, delivered care packages to the Methodist Hospital staff earlier this month. While doctors and nurses have been notably fighting the pandemic on the front lines, the civic association wanted to send some love to the maintenance and support staff, who have been performing important tasks behind the scenes at the hospital at 2301 S. Broad St.
“We wanted to show some appreciation to the central staff that don’t seem to be getting as much thanks,” said Rachael Small, a board member for the Lower Moyamensing Civic Association. “We sent care packages to environmental, laundry services and transportation. We do, of course, appreciate doctors and nurses, but these are people who are thanked a little bit less. And we want to let them know we appreciate them as well.”
The association bought meals for all three shifts at Methodist for maintenance and support staff. In doing so, meals were purchased at local vendors to support local business during the tough times of the pandemic.
“We were trying to serve two important groups at once,” Small said. “It’s important that we support our local businesses, too.”
Care packages included freshly squeezed orange juice from La Tienda on Snyder Avenue, breakfast sandwiches from Homegrown Coffees & Creations on Porter Street, hoagie trays from Johnny’s Cafe on 12th Street and chicken wings from SouthHouse on 13th Street. Girl Scout Cookies made the perfect complement to all care packages.
“These businesses are happy to be supporting the people at the hospital as well,” Small said. “They have always been very friendly businesses with us.”
Lower Moyamensing President Patti Tahan said small acts of kindness can go a long way in showing appreciation to those working during the pandemic.
“It’s important to remind everyone to be patient and kind to everyone else,” Tahan said. “For those working behind the scenes, those we run into each day, we can never tell what level of physical and emotional stress they are under.”
LoMo’s work isn’t finished. The group was hoping to honor sanitation workers but ran into some red tape when it came to conflicts with city policies. The group says sanitation workers have been overburdened with extra trash as more residents are doing home improvement projects, leading to more waste.
The city has acknowledged the situation by knocking back recycling pickup to every other week instead of weekly collections to help ease the burden. The group is hoping to find an alternative way to say thank you.
“We’ve discussed it in our meetings that sanitation workers are doing even more work than they usually do,” Small said. “A lot of people are cooped up in their houses and are taking the time to do repairs that they may have put to the side for a little while. You see a lot of cabinets and rugs and a lot more than you would usually see on trash night.”
The added efforts of the civic association hasn’t strayed the group from doing what it does best — alerting residents to important information regarding the neighborhoods. LoMo is helping distribute information about the importance of filling out absentee ballots and the 2020 Census.
“Being counted is one of the major ways to be represented,” Small said. “The reporting from the census goes directly to deciding how much money goes to schools and really everything that helps us operate, including our essential services.”
Residents can find information on absentee ballots by visiting https://www.pavoterservices.pa.gov/OnlineAbsenteeApplication/#/OnlineAbsenteeBegin.