Taking Care of Our Own August 28 & 29
Athena Health Care Systems recently held their Annual Taking Care of Our Own employee softball tournament at Southington, CT’s Panthorne Park. Celebrating its 20th season during the August 28 and 29 weekend, the tournament welcomed hundreds of employees and their families to the sprawling park to enjoy friendly, yet competitive softball games, a barbeque, and family-friendly games and activities for children of all ages.
Dozens of children’s games and activities, arts and crafts, a 9-hole miniature golf course, face painting, and a tie-dye station were available for employees and their families. An assortment of food throughout both days featuring a barbeque and many salads and side dishes were provided at no charge, compliments of Athena’s president, Larry Santilli.
More than 30 raffles were donated from Athena managed centers in three states as well as Larry Santilli and his wife, Valerie, were on hand. Raffle items ranged from laptops, Chrome Books, Nintendo Switches to food and custom-themed baskets from Athena nursing homes.
History of Taking Care of Our Own
The Taking Care of Our Own was initially created to raise money and awareness for the Susan G Komen for the Cure, which benefits breast cancer prevention and research. After realizing how many Athena employees were undergoing various types of cancer treatments, the organizers of the tournament turned their focus to Athena employees.
The need to “take care of our own” was identified and funds raised would go directly to Athena’s nursing home staff in their time of need. Thus, the renaming and re-organization into what is now the Taking Care of Our Own tournament and fund.
Since then, the Taking Care of Our Own fund has distributed more than $453,000 to more than 100 employees throughout the Athena network in 38 of our sister centers. Kind donations from staff and their family members, as well as their willingness to help others at a very difficult time in their life has made the tournament and its fund an enormous success.
Fundraising for the Cause
Every center comes up with a plan to raise funds for the tournament. Many choose to hold various fundraisers in their center throughout the year, such as collecting donations for employees to wear their favorite team jersey on a specific day, to various old-school car washes, or bake sales. Additionally, each team that enters the tournament pays an entrance fee. The final income source for the tournament comes from the exciting raffle “baskets” many centers donate. Most centers choose a theme to represent their center, staff, location, etc.