Since 1977, National Nursing Assistants Week has been held to celebrate and recognize the outstanding work and contributions of nursing assistants in the healthcare and senior living communities. Your staff deserves praise and appreciation, and there’s never been a better time to show it than National Nursing Assistants Week, June 14-21, 2018. The following Nursing Assistants Week ideas – including unique products and recognition events – are fun and memorable ways to express gratitude, boost morale, and encourage teamwork!
Recognize Your Nursing Assistants
Really put your heart into National Nursing Assistants Week. Hang signs that read “Our CNAs Have a Lot of Heart.” Ask the non-nursing staff to wear something red or pink in honor of your nursing assistants. Have a spokesperson say a few words of thanks, and hand out Nursing Assistants Week gifts to the team. Here are a couple more suggestions for a successful and entertaining CNA week:
- For an interactive way to say “thanks,” put the names of every nursing assistant into a hat, a basket, or even a bed pan (clean, of course!). Have each staffer draw a name, then hand out blank thank-you cards and ask each participant to write a message of appreciation to the person he/she selected. Gather them all up and distribute them along with a gift of appreciation, like a nursing assistants travel mug.
- Encourage your nursing assistants to bring in baby or childhood photos. Display them in the lunchroom or break room throughout the week, and at a set time, gather the staff and see if they can identify who’s who. Give small gifts to everyone who participated and award a nursing assistants tote bag or pen set to the victor.
- Make a list of 10 questions about your facility: its history, current staff, interesting tidbits about nursing, etc. Have your team of nursing assistants write down guesses as you read the questions to the group, or distribute a written test if you can’t get everyone together. Reward each participant with a nursing assistants T-shirt, and award the highest scorer with a nursing assistants gift set.
Reward Your Winning Staff with Nursing Assistants Week Ideas
Plan a recognition luncheon for your CNAs after each shift, complete with balloons and decorations. Have a key staff member acknowledge the great work of your nursing assistants. Other thoughts and Nursing Assistants Week ideas for recognizing these outstanding individuals include:
- Arrange for an outside speaker, such as a former nurse or physician from your facility, to talk about the value of nursing assistants to the healthcare industry. Present each CNA with a nursing assistants messenger bag.
- Find a visible wall and hang a photo of each nursing assistant at your facility. Under each photo, hang a sheet of paper with the CNA’s name and primary responsibility or specialty. Invite nursing assistants, other colleagues, and residents to write what they appreciate about each nursing assistant. At the end of the week, surprise each CNA with a lapel pin or some other fun Nursing Assistant Week gifts.
- What’s an appreciation week without good food? Develop a unique menu for this special week of recognizing your nursing assistants. Try coming up with a food that starts with the same letter as the day of the week. How about Macaroni Monday, Tamale Tuesday, Wings Wednesday, Three Bean Salad Thursday, and Fish Fry Friday? Or ask your staff to come up with the foods, and give a nursing assistants lunch bag to the most creative menu planner.
Your nursing assistant staff provides exceptional care and genuine compassion to your patients and residents all year round. Showing your appreciation through these Nursing Assistants Week ideas and other creative efforts is easy, affordable, and effective. Your recognition of the nursing assistants on your team ensures that their dedication and commitment doesn’t go unnoticed!