Local businesses and residents come together to bring cheer to doctors, nurses, cleaning and administration staff at local nursing homes, Erie Shore Healthcare

APRIL 13, 2020

ESSEX, ON – A group of local businesses and residents in Essex County, spearheaded by Essex MP, Chris Lewis, have come together to bring cheer to frontline workers at nursing homes across the county and at Erie Shore Healthcare in Leamington.

In announcing this campaign, Essex MP, Chris Lewis said, “How does one say thank you to our frontline workers caring for our seniors and those in our Intensive Care Units being treated for COVID-19? That question has been on my heart, and I know on the hearts of many of you, since the pandemic was first declared; and with the help of some wonderful people in my riding, we have found a tangible way to express our thanks and to celebrate these heroes.”

Lewis added, “I am reminded of the adage, “not all superheroes wear capes”. As we have learned some don masks and gowns, some carry brooms and mops and some keep the lights on and our hospitals running”.

Lewis thanked his team for their generosity. “I would like to thank Cindy’s Home and Garden, Wave Direct, Mark and Fran Rankin, Tim & Marita Dobson, Pelee Island Winery, IZA Design & Manufacturing, Kingsville Car Wash and Laundry Mat and Del Fresco Pure, for their support and generous donations.”

When it was clear that the automatic pay increase would not be suspended as Lewis and his MP colleagues had called for, Lewis considered how best to invest these funds back into his community. “Many have asked, others supposed, some have assumed, let me be clear, with so many of my constituents facing job losses and uncertainty, there was never a question of whether I would donate the pay increase but only to what cause. It was a challenge to decide because there are so many worthy recipients.”

Lewis added, “I come from a family of givers. My parents are my role models, the people I admire most in this world. I was raised on this Christian principle, “never let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.” It goes against the grain for me to discuss my charitable giving, but, under the circumstances, I felt what I intended to do with the MP pay raise was a legitimate question and the people of Essex deserved an answer.”

Lewis a former firefighter who has seen the sacrifices these unsung heroes make day in and day out and as well, with his daughter, Faith, working at a local Nursing Home, he set his sights on the staff at local nursing homes and at the hospital in Leamington.

He then approached Jason from Cindy’s Home and Garden, a well-known gift shop in the Town of Kingsville to see what could be done. The campaign took off from there. Others threw in their lot, some giving cash donations, which were used to purchase items from local businesses and local businesses who donated in kind items.

Lewis was clearly pleased to announce, that “Together we have been able to put together over 400 gift bags for our frontline caregivers. These bags will be distributed to doctors, nurses, cleaning staff and administration officials at Erie Shore Healthcare in Leamington on Tuesday afternoon, April 14th. As well, this past weekend, produce from Del Fresco Pure was distributed to staff at nursing homes across the County.”

He also thanked Erie Shore Healthcare officials for working with his team to make this dream to celebrate frontline healthcare workers a reality. “Thank you for your support for this campaign and thank you for all you do to care for the residents of Essex County. We are proud of our local hospital and grateful for the excellent care you provide.” Lewis added, “Together we will get through this pandemic.”

MP Lewis closed off his remarks with his signature sign-off, “We will leave this world a better place than we found it.”

Chris Lewis MP - Essex

Constituency Office

Ottawa Office