Hospital workers adopt 40 families

The Rodrigues family received Christmas gifts from Maui Memorial Medical Center through Maui Family Support Services Adopt-A-Family program. Pictured with members of the family are hospital staff members.

Maui Memorial Medical Center staff members provided hundreds of Christmas gifts for 40 Maui County families in need through Maui Family Support Services Adopt-A-Family program.

The hospital started off in the program with just one department participating a couple of years ago, but it has now grown to 27 different departments assisting families on Maui, Molokai and Lanai, according to a news release.

“This is a true blessing,” said Donna Vickers, Maui Family Support Services chief financial officer. “We had families who, until (recently) had zero presents under their tree. Because of the amazing people at Maui Memorial Medical Center, we were able to make this the best Christmas ever for families on Maui, Molokai and Lanai. We are truly grateful.”

Participating hospital staff members presented the gifts they purchased to the families who gathered at the medical center. Santa (played by a nurse from MMMC’s Behavioral Health Department) also made an appearance.

Expeditions Lanai and Young Brothers helped ship the presents to Lanai and Molokai, respectively.

Dalilha Rodrigues, a member of one of the families chosen, said: “The morning I received the email that we had been chosen, I was at work and literally broke down in tears at my desk. Prior to this blessing, we all agreed that as long as we were together for Christmas, the gifts didn’t matter. But to see the smile on my kids’ faces as they received their gifts was the greatest gift of all. My kids now have a better understanding of Christmas blessings and what Christmas magic really is.”