Kids flash flashlights out of their windows at Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, and local law enforcement and community members respond by flashing their lights back.
Welcome to Project Night Lights.
And boy, does it bring smiles to the faces of patients, who feel the love with those flashing lights.
The first official edition of this special project will kick off at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 13. It will continue every second Wednesday of the month at 8:30 p.m.
Rallying community support is what this initiative is all about.
The initiative is a partnership between Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, Silent Observer, Kent County Sheriff’s Department, Grand Rapids Police Department, and other area law enforcement. The goal is to provide patients a little added encouragement from the community.
“Many of these kids are in the middle of one of the toughest battles of their lives,” said Officer JP Guerrero with the Grand Rapids Police Department. “It’s great to know that something this small can bring cheer and joy to a child.”
Officer Joy Matthews with the Kent County Sheriff’s Department agrees.
“It felt indescribable,” she said about a May test run of the initiative. “Even though we couldn’t see the kids from our cruisers, seeing the flashlights flash back at us made us all smile a lot.”
Her advice for kiddos in the hospital: Keep on fighting—for the next day, for your family, and for your friends.
As a special addition to this fun project, the sign atop Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital will blink on and off at 8:30 p.m. as a beacon to encourage people to join in by blinking their lights as well. If you’re in the neighborhood, bring a flashlight or flash your cell phone back at the hospital. The kids inside will be watching.