BOSTON, MA — It was just the latest in a string of grants totaling over $85,000.
But as the Boston Bruins Foundation handed over another check to Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, it was ensured that the Black & Gold would maintain their presence in the hospital even as the organization shifts to a new facility in Charlestown.
"Spaulding rehab has always had a close spot in the Bruins heart just because of the proximity, and because of the situations that have come across with different children in particular," said Bob Sweeney, Executive Director of the Boston Bruins Foundation.
"For us, being a part and having a Bruins gymnasium in their hospital is a great way for not only us and for some of our players to give back to the kids that have been less fortunate, but what we try to do and what makes me proud is if we come to see a kid, and to see the progression the child has made during his stay at Spaulding is amazing."
Spaulding's new building is amazing too, and although those of us who have been to the old facility on the banks of the Charles River will carry with us the memories of the children who've progressed through the Bruins Pediatric Gymnasium in the West End, everyone who sees the new gym will be excited for the miracles destined to take place in The Town.
"I’m extraordinarily proud," said Greg Ney, Medical Equipment Coordinator for the new hospital. "It is a fantastic project to be a part of for a number of reasons.
"One, the whole rehabilitation hospitals hit home," he explained. "My mother had a stroke so to be a part of this is very important. It’s going to be the best rehab hospital in the country; in the world, and to have my sort of stamp on it is an honor and a privilege.
"I think the main theme of this hospital, and we’re going to see this in some of its space, is really optimism. If there’s any place that you’ll be able to recover, it’s right here," he said.
The B's place in the new building will serve the same purpose across the river.
"We have people who come from around the world to be able to get the care that we have here. Now we’re able to do it in a facility that’s fitting of the care that we’ve always been giving," said Melissa Forger, Director of Development for Partners Continuing Care. "To be able to have this brand new gymnasium, and to be able to buy brand new equipment all with the support of the Bruins Foundation, it helps us to offer that state-of-the-art level of our care.
"At Spaulding, our slogan is ‘find your strength.’ Who knows more about finding your strength than professional athletes like the Bruins?" continued Forger. "Having them come and be able to be in front of our kids, whether it’s in person, or whether it’s just the Bruins logo on the door and pictures on the walls, for those kids to think about—they can do it.
"They get out every day and they fight the fight, and I can fight the fight and find my strength to get my way back."
And the Black & Gold will be back, again and again, especially if Bob Sweeney has his say.
"The work that they do here when a child first comes in to when they leave is just incredible," he said.
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