Since 1990, National Nurses Week has been celebrated from May 6th – 12th, ending on Florence Nightingale’s birthday. These permanent dates recognize the role nurses have played in healing humanity, and honors the individuals known as the “heart of healthcare”. (1)
Promotional products are a standard favorite for showing nurse appreciation with swag imprinted with their employer’s logo. However, maybe it’s time to rethink what a Nurses Week celebration includes. People get excited about things that offer a sense of identity and pride, nostalgia, are cool or provide value. And according to FreshRN, a truly memorable Nurses Week will make staff feel recognized and appreciated while also reigniting their passion for their work.
If your clients are looking to create a memorable (but still affordable) Nurses Week, here are some suggestions to get the parties started.
Shout it Out
People whose hard work is recognized publicly are more positive, productive and innovative. (2) So don’t just tell nurses that you appreciate them. Tell their unique stories to local media through press releases and feature their actual photos on appreciation posters, Sticky Notes™, and press/event folders throughout the facility (instead of just stock imagery).
Bring in massage therapists to visit nurses stations and provide 10 minute chair massages, but don’t forget to staff a floating nurse to relieve people as their take their turn to relax. Supply the nurses stations with essential oil diffusers and scents to help them mellow out, or invigorate them for their shifts.
Let the Dogs Out
If a facility has therapy dogs, why not let them make extra rounds to brighten the mood even more during Nurses Week? Make even more impact by imprinting the pups’ collars, leashes or even water bowls with the reasons they appreciate the nursing staff!
Bring together the people who have been nurses for over 25 years for a special party in their honor. Make as big a deal as budgets will allow, send invitations and plan for refreshments, photography and possibly entertainment. Ask administration, volunteers and employees to attend and be present to award honorees for their dedication.
As of 1998, National Student Nurses Day is celebrated on May 8, within National Nurses Week. (4) Consider bringing students to the event to honor the veteran nurses who can then share their wisdom with the next generation.
Walk a Mile in their Shoes
Ask the Executive Staff and CEO to put on scrubs and join the nursing staff for a day, or even just a few hours. Get the marketing department to take photos and share them both internally and on social media. This is also a great time to schedule a Blessing of the Hands, where chaplaincy services make rounds to offer to bless the hands of caregivers. (3)
Instead of just handing out a few promos imprinted with the facility’s logo, create a more personal Swag Bag with items that the nursing staff will love. Also consider creating cool and meaningful imprint artwork that will resonate more with nurses than just a logo. Be sure to select a quality and functional bag that nurses will love to carry both to work and in their off time.
Are you ready to help your clients create a memorable National Nurses Week in May? Visit bicgraphic.com for memorable Nurses Week promos that are sure show nursing professionals how much they are appreciated.