Thursday, October 21, 2021

SMC does it again!

Staff Reporter | September 23, 2021 12:54 PM

SMELTERVILLE — Kids, coats and community.

That is what Shoshone Medical Center focuses on every year during its annual Kids Health Fair which was held last weekend.

This year the fair was scheduled to be back in-person after last year’s was called off due to the pandemic, but with positive cases beginning to increase, event organizers made the decision to hold the event in-person, but in a drive-through style format — which also helped when the rain set in.

Tents were set up around SMC’s Wellness Center parking lot and cars brought their families through where they could stop and interact with each booth, which kept both the organizers and the attendees safe and allowed for conversations to be more centered on specific needs.

“The format actually worked really well with the amount of rain that we got that day because the families were able to remain in their vehicle and stay dry,” said SMC Business Development Coordinator Shayleen Paul. “The feedback from the exhibitors who participated enjoyed the fair this year because they were able to give one-on-one attention and give informational resources to the participants without interruption. This was a great way to have the much needed community service safely and effectively.”

Themed ‘Doctors and Nurses,’ SMC staff organized and put together first aid kits as the giveaway prize for the children — which was the only real way to stick to the theme with the weather eliminating the possibility of each booth being able to be in costume.

The fair also served as the hospital’s annual coat giveaway, an important tradition that has seen SMC give away over thousands of coats over the years.

This year they were able to give away more than 200 winter coats to kids as they made their way through the fair.

It may not seem like much, but for many families purchasing a winter coat may be an expense they can’t cover and SMC has recognized this potential issue and worked diligently over the years to mitigate it.

“This event is not just a kind act that SMC does for the community, it is much needed,” Paul said. “There are so many families that are struggling to provide the basic needs of shelter, food and heat for their children, let alone warm winter wear. With over half of our community living below the poverty line, it is an absolute necessity to do what we can to bless the families and youth of the community.”