Tuesday, November 27, 2007

HealthPlans team reaches out to children of Iraq

When Julie Dawson, underwriting manager at Cox HeathPlans, started looking for a way to support her brother who is serving with the U.S. Army in Iraq, she had no idea she’d be starting a company-wide drive.

Dawson’s brother, Lt. Col. Noel Nicolle, had mentioned that soldiers could use toys and stuffed animals for the children they meet daily as they work in Ramadi, about 70 miles west of Baghdad.

Dawson and her co-workers began collecting toys for the children and books and DVDs for the soldiers. In just a few weeks, they had 10 boxes of donations.

The staff also worked with Information Technology to organize a Web-cam teleconference with Lt. Col. Nicolle and several Missouri soldiers on Sept. 13 to thank them for their service.

“We’re extremely grateful,” Lt. Col Nicolle told the HealthPlans staff. “To know that people have donated their time and effort to help us and Iraqis they’ve never met, it speaks well of the generosity of Americans. I thank God I’m an American.”