Kate Breen Across Mass General – and throughout neighborhoods and communities – remain simple acts of kindness that shine through during this time of uncertainty. Paul Lerou, chief of Neonatology and Newborn Medicine at MassGeneral Hospital for Children, shares his story.

When I got home last week, I told my daughters about the thank you signs hanging outside the hospital and explained how incredibly meaningful that small gesture was for staff. This weekend, they jumped into action, wanting to show similar support, and sent messages to their friends on Instagram and Snapchat and asked the teens to break out their poster board and markers too.

Kate Breen

Ella, Lilly, and Abigail got permission from their Newton North High School teachers to reach out to classmates using Schoology, their virtual classroom app. By Sunday night, we collected more than 60 posters. I brought the bundle in on Tuesday morning, knowing staff had a difficult weekend securing alternative care options for our longterm babies who needed to be transferred to other hospitals.

NICU Nurses

I ran into one issue though - how was I going to get these hung up? The answer was, of course, ask a nurse for help! Luckily, Kate Breen, RN was delivering baskets of coffee and snacks, made by NICU nurses, to refill and refuel staff on the 12 units heavily impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, including Police and Security, Respiratory Therapy, Emergency Department and our own pediatric intensive care unit. We clipped posters of positivity to each basket before Kate and other amazing nurses carried them across the hospital. As you can imagine my girls and their friends were beyond thrilled to learn their signs went up for MGH staff to see and that although “stuck at home,” they too could help make a difference.