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Thank You to Our Starling Angels


Employees of Starling Physicians have once again served “angels” for hundreds of city children who will receive Christmas gifts from the Salvation Army. 

 “A lot of these families are our patients,” said Karen Cookish, who for the past 25 years has organized the Angel Tree donations as a practice manager for Starling Physicians. “Christmas is about kids, it’s about giving that basketball that might take them somewhere. It’s about bringing a little light into a kid’s eyes at Christmas.” 

Through Cookish’s efforts everyone from the IT staff to physicians, including retired doctors, pitched in to fill the requests listed on the Angel Tree tags at the New Britain Salvation Army. In some cases, the kids ask for a warm blanket for their bed, or “sneakers that fit,” Cookish said. Last year the health care provider donated 15 new bicycles as part of their donations to fill 700 requests. Cookish was sorting about 400 tags this week in order to get them out to her co-workers in time to return the gifts for the Dec. 12 deadline. 

The 147 families who receive the gifts have children ages 12 and under. Those families and another 50 families who don’t receive gifts because they have no children under the age of 12 will get holiday food baskets to make their own Christmas meal. 

 Here are some pictures of the team effort. Over 400 toys went to the Salvation Army and the extra toys went the State Police “Stuff a Cruiser” event.