Belt shares resources with neighbors, shows appreciation for those on front line

Tough times don’t last; tough communities do.

The Belt has been an important part of its neighborhood during the unprecedented challenge of COVID-19, sharing resources and showing appreciation for those on the front lines, including first responders and health care workers.

The Belt donated 55-gallon drums of hand sanitizer to Chicago Police Department’s 8th District and Bedford Park Police. They’ve also shared sanitizer with multiple area police forces and fire departments, including Burbank, Chicago and Summit; first responders from those locations have made frequent visits to the Belt to replenish their sanitizer bottles.

After learning nurses at Oak Lawn’s Advocate Christ Hospital and Medical Center were short of PPE, the Belt donated safety glasses, masks and gloves, as well as a lunch of sub sandwiches to the team. 

Police Chief Gerald Conoboy said he and his teammates noticed many Belt connections — spouses, siblings, children, and parents — perform the most essential roles amid the pandemic. They wanted to do something to recognize those individuals, so they started a drawing. Employees enter a family member working an essential job, and one is chosen at random at regular intervals. That person is presented flowers and a letter of appreciation. So far, the honored include Nakia Cook, a nurse at Saint Anthony Hospital and the wife of Electrician Louis Cook; Michele Gower, nursing director for Fox Subacute skilled nursing facility in Pennsylvania, the wife of Manager of Operational Safety and Compliance Mike Holoweinka; and Cook County Sheriff Deputy Michael Myatt, father of Senior PTC Systems Engineer, Wayside Chadana Myatt.

Chadana thanked the Belt saying she and her father were deeply touched by the gesture.

“Of neighborhoods, benevolence is the most beautiful. How can the man be considered wise who when he had the choice does not settle in benevolence.” 

–  Confucius