Project Independence is a crucial relief fund designed to help patients of Morristown Medical Center recover from financial hardship caused by an illness or hospitalization. Founded by the late William E. Simon in 1990 and supported by the William E. Simon Foundation and other donors for over 30 years, Project Independence provides one-time cash gifts to pay for basic living expenses – like rent, food, clothing, health care and transportation – so patients can maintain their independence, dignity and take the first important step to rebuild their lives. To date, more than $8.5 million has been donated to support the program, impacting the lives of more than 2,500 patients and their families.
Established in 2008 and expanded in 2013 through a grant from The Women’s Association for Morristown Medical Center, the Soothing Paws Program has more than 80 volunteer Human-Animal Teams at Morristown Medical Center and more than 100 system-wide. Through donor support, Soothing Paws currently accommodates more than 1,200 monthly patient visits along with regular clinical unit visits, home hospice visits and visits for team members across the medical center and corporate offices. Soothing Paws also provides insights for AAI through bi-annual educational conferences hosted by Morristown Medical Center featuring national key thought leaders and educators.
Spiritual support is available to Morristown Medical Center’s team members, patients and their families 24 hours a day, seven days a week and many patients, family members and loved ones rely upon our hospital in the most trying of times. The Spiritual Care Department also houses a Clinical Pastoral Education Program. The Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) program at Morristown Medical Center is an interfaith professional education program for spiritual care. The program is accredited by the Association of Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE), the standard for spiritual care education. ACPE is the only agency recognized by the United States Department of Education to accredit Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) programs in the United States.
Through CPE, students learn and train to become interfaith chaplains in the context of crisis and spiritual and emotional distress. Morristown Medical Center’s program currently has 12 CPE Interns and Residents. Students in the program make thousands of visits each year, including 24/7 coverage, and responding to code blue medical emergencies. In 2022, philanthropy helped to subsidize tuition payments for five units of Clinical Pastoral Education, including two intern and three resident groups.
On September 8, 2022, the Foundation for Morristown Medical Center hosted the Memorial Wall Dedication on Rooke Family Plaza, an event focused on remembering lives beautifully lived, and hearts deeply loved. The Memorial Wall was created in 2014 and pays tribute to more than 100 individuals annually.
The evening featured a presentation of the names memorialized on the wall and remarks by Robert Tafaro, chairman of the Foundation for Morristown Medical Center Board of Trustees, Trish O’Keefe, president for Morristown Medical Center and senior vice president and chief nurse executive for Atlantic Health System and Caroline Unzaga, manager of Spiritual Care for Morristown Medical Center. Attendees enjoyed a heartfelt performance by vocalists, Julianna Belles and Charlotte Cama from the Mayo Chorus, accompanied by Darius Frowner on keyboard.
Foundation for Morristown Medical Center donors have fulfilled countless needs this past year while at the same time facing personal hardship and loss. View photos from the event.