Beanies for Babies: CPMC Nurse Gives Back by Making Snuggly Hats
SAN FRANCISCO–June Shiraki R.N., started her career in nursing in 1993 as a nurse’s aide in telemetry at the California Pacific Medical Center’s (CPMC) Pacific Campus. She followed in the footsteps of her mother who started working at CPMC’s California Campus in 1974. But it was a patient that really encouraged June to actually become a nurse and follow her passion to care for others.
In the spirit of generosity and to thank patients for having their babies at CPMC, June crochets a beanie-style hat for each newborn in her care. She receives heartfelt thank-yous every time she presents a hat to a mother. Shiraki acknowledges that patients keep the hats as generational keepsakes, some going to lengths of preserving them in hope chest. She even has “repeat” patients!
“It is amazing how people come back and ask for me when they deliver their next child,” said Shiraki. “I even have people who recognize me when I am traveling in Hawaii or Tahoe and they come up to me to say how wonderful their experience was.”
According to “hat math” calculations, Shiraki crochets 20 hats a week, which totals more than 1,000 hats a year. “I didn’t realize how many hats I have made. I guess I make a lot of hats,” she exclaimed. “Everywhere I go I have a ball of yarn and a needle so I am crocheting all the time…even on the plane to Hawaii.”
Shiraki is happy and appreciative to be the second generation in her family to work at CPMC. She also expresses gratitude for her patients and thinks fondly of the one who set her life’s work into motion. “I am thankful for the positive interactions I have with patients. It is just so heartwarming and I am happy to give back in the name of Camilla, the patient who inspired me to become a nurse to begin with.”