By Mariann Beddoe
Families from Riverview Christian Academy (RCA) in Reno, Nevada, had the opportunity to participate in a community service project for those in their school family who are serving on the front lines of this pandemic. Parent Krista Wyman and her children Dani (second grade), Brody (sixth grade), and Rylee (tenth grade) organized an appreciation gift for physician Cristine Lista and nurse Mia Finau. Both Lista and Finau are working with patients each day, serving them unselfishly in spite of high risk for themselves and their families.
Krista and her children contacted RCA families, asking them first of all to pray for these ladies and their families. They were encouraged to collect small, thoughtful gifts that would bring a smile to their faces (examples: gum, hair ties, healthy snacks, hand sanitizer, and so on). These gifts were then taken to a drop-off container that was provided in front of each of the homes. At each home, near the container, was a giant card inviting others to write words of encouragement as they dropped off their gifts.
Second-grader Dani Wyman said, “It was fun making the posters and getting everything ready! I wanted them to feel appreciated and remind them all that Jesus loves us. It makes me sad that I can’t play with them [their children] now, so this was a way to make them feel happier, because they could be missing friends too.”
This project was a surprise that really meant a lot to Lista and Finau.
Wyman and her children also made posters and gift baskets for other frontline medical workers that live in their neighborhood. The Wymans invited neighbors to participate while walking their dogs or on their drive home, and the neighbors were delighted to help out with such a worthwhile project.
“When my neighbor told me she is working in the respiratory unit at the hospital daily and felt that she and her family may be asymptomatic carriers of COVID-19, she wasn’t comfortable with the girls going on a quick bike ride,” Krista Wyman said. “This got my family conversing about the extent of the worry that all of these frontline families may feel and how a little something thoughtful could brighten their days. The idea emerged and my kids learned a lesson in selflessness—that kind actions can be so rewarding, and others benefit beyond our knowledge. We are proud of and pray for all those involved that help to make our country and world a safer place to be.”