The Sunshine Cart program began through WISH funding in 2018 and has grown from three carts in two hospitals to 21 carts in three hospitals—UCHealth Poudre Valley Hospital, UCHealth Medical Center of the Rockies, and UCHealth Greeley Hospital.

The Sunshine Cart is filled with meaningful activities and tools to help reduce the risk of confusion and to decrease distress in hospitalized persons living with dementia. The items are single-use only for infection control, so each item is a gift to the patient.

In this brief video, Peggy Budai, a nurse practitioner and clinical nurse specialist at UCHealth, provides information about the cart. During these difficult times for health care workers, this project has, as one nurse put it, brought a little bit of joy, such as when she gave a patient a stuffed animal from the cart. The patient hugged the toy, and her eyes welled with tears. Another patient, when looking through the reminiscing book provided from the cart, started talking about his brother and a trip that they had taken to the mountains. Before this, the patient had been mostly nonverbal.

WISH offers philanthropists an opportunity to work together and combine their resources to exponentially increase their positive impact on health in northern Colorado. Since its founding eight years ago, WISH has awarded over $435,000 to 117 local health programs and services of UCHealth. This year, the group awarded $68,145 to 19 programs.

Learn about other WISH awards, and find out how you can join or sponsor: