Comforting blankets arrive in Caledonia

Michelle Johnson, at left, of the Mayo Clinic Health System of La Crosse and school nurse Connie Simon displayed some of the new blankets that Mayo recently donated to the local public schools. Photo by Zach Thomas

By Ricky Thiesse
Mayo Clinic Health System

It happens nearly on a daily basis. A child at school comes down with a fever, ache or chill.  Knowing it may be some time before mom or dad leave work to pick up their ill child, Caledonia Public School nurses do all they can to make each child as comfortable as possible.  However, the one thing a child may need the most hasn’t been available; until now.

Mayo Clinic Health System is donating 50 stadium style blankets to the Caledonia Areas School District. The blue fleece blankets will be spread out to all the school nurse offices throughout the district in hopes of comforting each sick child while they wait to go home.

“When this program started off, we never expected to hear from so many schools about fulfilling this need,” said Joan Mueller, executive director of External Affairs at Mayo Clinic Health System. “Since kicking off this program, we’ve donated more than 150 blankets to four different school districts with more to come. This truly honors our Franciscan heritage within the Coulee Region.”

“We hope these blankets will add security and warmth to every child under the most uncomfortable circumstances, and underlines our values that the needs of the patients come first,” said Michelle Johnson, Mayo Clinic Health System La Crescent clinic director.

Beside Caledonia, school districts in La Crosse, Prairie du Chien and La Crescent have also received blankets from Mayo Clinic Health System.

If other schools are interested in this program, they can contact the Mayo Clinic Health System Business Development offices at 608-392-9717.