Making Christmas Magic

December 26, 2023

Due to the generosity of countless Middlesex Health employees, Christmas wishes were granted this year. 

Middlesex staff, representing more than 50 departments, brought Christmas joy to 55 local families through the Adopt-A-Family program, giving them presents to open on Christmas morning. Families unwrapped various gifts donated by Middlesex employees — from movie tickets and Kid City passes to an air fryer and even a doll house.

In addition, staff delivered gifts donated by the Jason Lantieri Memorial Foundation to 32 local preschoolers. The foundation is run by Chief Nursing Officer Kelly Haeckel and her husband.


“It truly shows you how much Middlesex cares for the community,” says Heather Kelsey, a mental health counselor for Intensive In-Home Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Services (IICAPS) at The Beit Paley Center. 

Heather organized Adopt-A-Family this year with help from Chloe Williams, who is a clinician for IICAPS at The Beit Paley Center.  

Middlesex has helped families in need through its Adopt-A-Family program since 2007. Each year, mental health services staff members identify patients who could benefit from participating in the Adopt-A-Family program and then Middlesex employees, along with a few neighboring organizations, work together to ensure that the patients and their families have plenty to celebrate during the holiday season. 

For Heather and Chloe, organizing Adopt-A-Family is a labor of love — an initiative that is well worth the effort, and they describe the feeling they get when they deliver packages to families as overwhelming. It’s overwhelming for both Middlesex staff and the families, Chloe says, adding that the families don’t expect so many gifts. 

The families are appreciative, Heather says. “It’s just this overwhelming feeling of holiday spirit,” she says. “It’s just the best feeling.”

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