Spring and fall … perfect times to take stock and tidy up. As we trade t-shirts and flipflops for scarves and sweaters, some bits might not seem up for the trip. Is it time to find them a new home? (one that could really use them?)

image credit centennialarts.com

image credit: whiskeyriff.com
image credits: whiskeyriff.com and centenial arts.com

We have a work-wide version of that same concept. It’s the See It Shine team contest, and it’s on now till November 4th! The idea is that staff form teams to straighten up their spaces, take before and after pics, and maybe win some excellent gift certificates. They organize what they need and send the rest for reuse (best!), recycling (great!) or trash (not so great).

This year, we challenge our clinical colleagues to find SURPLUS MED SUPPLIES!

(Then it can be even more “S’s”)



Operation Green, a great group run by volunteer med students, salvages still-good-but-for-whatever-reason-we-can’t-use-’em medical supplies. Not only do they keep the supplies out of landfill (or worse…the incinerator), they ship to developing countries that hardly have two tongue depressors to rub together. Now these communities have access to clean gloves & gowns, dressings & defibrillators (it may be last-year’s model, but it’s still good). We save the hauling fee by not having these useful supplies sent off as waste.

Operation Green 2016-17 Team! (L-R) Amy Chan, Kiyoka Sasaki, Tina Wang, Jessica He, (not in photo, Evelyn Waugh)
Collecting the goodies … Operation Green’s 2016-17 Team! (L-R) Amy Chan, Kiyoka Sasaki, Tina Wang, Jessica He, (not in photo, Evelyn Waugh).

They often partner with great organizations like Not Just Tourists to get these goodies where they need to go. Luckily, you don’t have to be a med student to help out. Margo from the Princess Margaret Foundation volunteered to take an extra suitcase with her on holiday to Cuba. All these wonderful supplies helped out a nearby clinic.

Operation Green UHN supplies get to Cuba via Not Just Tourists
Operation Green supplies reach Cuba thanks to Margo from our own PMH Foundation! She carried a suitcase for Not Just Tourists.

UHN has sent about 19,051 kg (42,000 lbs) worth of great med supplies through Not Just Tourists in the last few years. That would be about 10 full skids worth of life-saving stuff!

Does your medical supply room need a shine?

There are lot of suggested items on  Operation Green’s poster below…

email OperationGreen@uhn.ca if you have any of these things
email OperationGreen@uhn.ca if you have any of these things and more

How to enter SEE IT SHINE (for UHN staff):

  1. Form a team for 3 or more
  2. Select an area to SHINE (like a medical supply room or clean utility room!)
  3. Take BEFORE pictures
  4. Sort, Set in Order and Shine (and get those great medical supplies to OperationGreen@uhn.ca)
  5. Take AFTER pictures
  6. Submit your entry form
  7. Sustain all year long by looking out for surplus supplies on a regular basis

(P.S. you can also skip right to the sending supplies to Op Green if you have them)

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Shine on!