Inspirational Stories QCH Foundation ottawa

A Thirst for Change

“You don’t need to make a big change in the world. Small acts of kindness can change the world.” Those words from a patient resonated with Erica Bregman, who works in the bustling Emergency Department (ED) at Queensway Carleton Hospital (QCH).   

From her receptionist desk she was often the first point of contact for patients coming into the ED.   

“Many patients come to the hospital prepared with a bottle of water, a book, a snack and a phone charger, while others arrive with anxiety, palpitations and a shortness of breath,” Erica explains. “They are in need of a little extra TLC when they arrive and get settled.”  

As a way to pay it forward, Erica took it upon herself to bring a case of bottled water to work on each of her shifts. She would happily hand out the H2O to thirsty or anxious patients and the nurses and ED staff who were often times too busy to even stop for a break.  

Erica’s stories from the ED caught the attention of her dad (Paul Bregman), who happens to be a long-serving member of the Rotary Club of Ottawa Bytown, and together the two came up with a more sustainable solution: the installation of a touch-free water bottle filling station in the ED 

The Rotary Club, and its president Mike Morris, wholeheartedly supported the project, voting unanimously in favour of covering the cost to install the water bottle filling station. And today, the new water dispenser is up and running, just a few steps from Erica’s desk.  

“This whole project started with great conversations with patients. I am really happy that we have been able to find a long term solution and grateful to the Rotary Club for their wonderful support of this community project,” says Erica Bregman