Operation COVID Christmas: Spreading Community Joy with Operation COVID Christmas Mt. Pleasant, SC. (press release)
What began as a conversation about how to spread holiday joy in the greater Mount Pleasant community in a challenging year has become a multi-faceted partnership of nonprofits forming a task force called Operation COVID Christmas. This task force will oversee several events during December: show appreciation to frontline medical workers, host a blood drive, provide Christmas cheer to retirement community residents who have been isolated from family and friends; and gather monetary donations for East Cooper hospitality workers who are facing difficulties with holiday expenses. The nonprofits working together to lead Operation COVID Christmas are:
Feed the Need, East Cooper Meals on Wheels, East Cooper Community Outreach, Mount Pleasant Waterworks, Patriots Point, and the Mount Pleasant Chamber of Commerce Foundation.
Operation COVID Christmas began as a conversation between Mount Pleasant Mayor Will Haynie and several Mount Pleasant non-profit groups about how to spread holiday joy as the challenging year of 2020 comes to an end.
"We focused on three groups in our community who have really felt the effects of the pandemic: Healthcare workers, the Isolated/Elderly, and Hospitality Workers," Haynie says. "What began as a conversation has become an expansive operation far exceeding our original vision."
East Cooper Medical Center appreciates the support of Operation COVID Christmas.
“Throughout the pandemic, we have received a continuous outpouring of support from our local community to recognize and honor the tireless dedication of our staff,” said Patrick Downes, CEO of East Cooper Medical Center. “We are very grateful for Mayor Haynie’s leadership and would like to thank everyone involved in making Operation COVID Christmas possible. Your time and efforts are appreciated!”
Mickey Bakst, a Mount Pleasant resident, brought in Feed The Need after having to change their normal charitable activities due to the pandemic. Feed the Need, with the help of Taziki's restaurant of Mount Pleasant, will be serving beautifully prepared box dinners for all unemployed hospitality workers at the Do Good Drive Through and Feeding at Patriots Point on December 6th, plus providing free meals to the staff at Mount Pleasant’s two hospitals at events on December 11th and 14th.
Col. Greg Gilmour, recently retired wing commander of the 315th Airlift Wing at Joint Base Charleston, is running the Operation COVID Christmas task force.
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The scheduled Operation COVID Christmas events include:
**** THIS SUNDAY ****
Do Good - Drive Through & Feeding organized by East Cooper Community Outreach. Donors will stay in their cars while dropping off items for participating nonprofits. Christmas carolers will provide singing, the Red Cross Bloodmobile will accept blood donations and Feed the Need will provide box dinners for all unemployed hospitality workers.
WHEN: Sunday, December 6, noon-3:00PM
WHERE: Patriots Point parking lot, 40 Patriots Point, Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464
DETAILS: The organizations and the list of items needed:
· East Cooper Community Outreach- collecting Canned food (fruits, vegetables, soup) and Cleaning Supplies (Laundry Detergent and Dish Soap)
· Shifa Clinic- collecting Hygiene items (soaps, shampoo, lotion) and NEW towels, any size
· East Cooper Meals on Wheels- collecting cat/dog food and healthy non-perishable breakfast items
Roper Mt. Pleasant Hospital Christmas caroling & feeding of medical workers. Feed The Need will provide meals and local citizens will provide Christmas caroling outdoors NOTE: This is not a public event in order to maintain social distancing.
WHEN: Friday December 11; 5 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Christmas Caroling for residents of local Retirement Communities
WHEN: Saturday December 12 and Sunday December 13
DETAILS: This will be an outside event; contact Rebecca@MountPleasantChamber.org/843-693-0537
East Cooper Medical Center caroling and feeding of medical workers by Feed The Need. Caroling by Saint Andrew’s Church. This is not a public event in order to maintain social distancing.
WHEN: Monday, December 14; 5 p.m.- 7:30 p.m.
Christmas Caroling for food recipients with East Cooper Meals on Wheels.
WHEN: Monday, December 14; Friday December 18; Monday December 21; and Wednesday December 23
DETAILS: Caroling groups will accompany East Cooper Meals On Wheels deliveries..
The Mount Pleasant Chamber of Commerce Foundation Presents Operation Hospitality Relief - A Holiday Fundraiser. Currently, over $10,000 has been pledged by the Mount Pleasant Chamber of Commerce and by Feed the Need to establish a holiday assistance fund for hospitality workers who have been adversely affected financially by the pandemic. We invite you to join us in this fundraiser to help our East Cooper hospitality community by making a donation by December 15th; these donations are tax deductible.
DETAILS: You can donate via venmo.com, under the handle @MountPleasant-Chamber, or you can mail a tax deductible donation by check to:
Mount Pleasant Chamber of Commerce Foundation
Attn: East Cooper Hospitality Fund
PO Box 1635
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29465