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Foundling Nurses

At The Foundling, we appreciate and value the team of nurses who care for children and people with developmental disabilities each and every day – but during this year’s National Nurses Week, we’re recognizing this essential segment of our workforce over the turbulent events of the past 15 months.

Nurses have always been an integral part of The Foundling—from our early days, when we operated a pediatric hospital and nursing school – to now. And while our services have evolved, this legacy of care continues with our nurses today.

Hisa Konna

The reach and scope of what nurses at The Foundling do is far-reaching.  In our four medical clinics across New York City, nurses provide routine care for the young people in our foster care programs. In our residential program for adults with developmental disabilities, nurses make regular visits across the City and surrounding counties to direct and monitor the health and medication regiments of the adults living in our 104 residences. The COVID-19 pandemic has made the role and work of our nurses even more important – and they have gone to great lengths in helping our program participants move forward during this unprecedented health crisis.

For our healthcare professionals and frontline staff at The Foundling, the past 15 months have been a true test of dedication. COVID-19 presented many challenges to providing patients with high-quality and compassionate care, but our nurses’ strong Foundling values and commitment to our mission drove them to continue their vital work– even when this required them to take extreme precautions to balance their work and personal lives.

Kendra, a nurse practitioner in the Bronx, continued to treat children at Foundling medical clinics during the pandemic – all while carrying a baby of her own. “I found out I was pregnant a bit before the start of the pandemic,” she says. From exchanging shifts, providing car rides to work, and being available for emotional support, her team rallied around her, providing care and compassion to ensure that she and her growing family was safe.

At the same time, Jolene showed true strength and determination as a nurse supervisor in our group residences for people with developmental disabilities. In the early weeks and months of the COVID outbreak in New York City, PPE and other protective gear was difficult to obtain—yet Jolene worked on the frontlines each and every day, committed to keeping the people in our care safe. Jolene tirelessly supported the residents with their health needs, provided comfort to their loved ones, and showed strength when infections began to show up in the workplace. When the virus hit even closer to home, and Jolene and her son contracted the coronavirus, her caring staff continued to be in contact and helped her pull through the tough times. Now, as the city begins to reopen, Jolene sees light at the end of the tunnel – and is proud and grateful for the resilience of her nursing team and the relationships she’s built along the way.

As many across our community look to thank nurses this week, we celebrate our Foundling nurses—both past and present—for the commitment, compassion, and care they provide to those we serve.