We’ve encountered immense change this year, and as we approach the end of December, this includes how many of us will experience the holidays. A season that’s typically filled with travel and larger celebrations will be more modest to keep our families and friends healthy and safe. It certainly doesn’t feel “normal,” but it’s a small price to pay to help make a difference.
There is one thing, however, that hasn’t changed this holiday season: the power of giving back to others, especially to those who are always giving of themselves.
Every doctor, nurse, pharmacist and health care worker on the front line continues to make incredible sacrifices as the global pandemic persists. Day in and day out, they care for their communities and put the health of others ahead of their own. And in the face of COVID-19, some have even lost their own lives.
This kind of sacrifice is why Cigna and New York Life, through our respective foundations, created the Brave of Heart Fund at E4E Relief. The Fund gives back to front line health care workers who lose their lives to COVID-19 by granting peace of mind through financial support. Cigna and New York Life also provide bereavement and emotional resources for their surviving families and loved ones. Since April 2020, over 250 families have received support totaling over $6.5 million.*
The foundations of Cigna and New York Life also established this Fund because health care heroes are more than just a brave face. They are our neighbors; our friends; our family members; and an integral part of how we keep our communities safe.
They are people like Clea.
Clea worked at a skilled nursing facility in the Seattle area for 26 years. She was beloved by her colleagues and friends, and many admired her determination and generosity. When Clea passed away due to complications from COVID-19, the Brave of Heart Fund was there to provide financial assistance to her family when they needed it the most, allowing them the important time to heal and honor her life.
I share Clea’s story because it’s a reminder that people around the world continue to sacrifice a great deal – including their own lives – for the protection of our health. And through the Brave of Heart Fund, we can help take care of those who lost loved ones that were always there to take care of us.
So, in the spirit and season of giving – and giving back – please help us support families, like Clea’s, by spreading the word about the Fund and how to apply. You can learn more about the Fund and the grant application process by visiting the Brave of Heart Fund website.
*Cigna Foundation. “Internal Report.” December 15, 2020.