EASTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – bankESB has made a $500,000 challenge grant to support the Emergency Department at Cooley Dickinson Hospital. President and CEO of bankESB, Matthew S. Sosik, announced the grant on Tuesday.

The funds will be used by the Cooley Dickinson Emergency Department to endure a $19.76 million expansion, reconfiguration, and renovation. Renovations will begin next Spring. The Emergency Department is 40% undersized with numbers such as 17,000 in the 1970s to nearly 34,000 in recent years, and patient numbers have doubled.

“Access to quality medical care is something we all count on, and Cooley Dickinson continues to do an amazing job treating our friends, family, and neighbors who live and work in our communities,” explained Sosik. “bankESB is pleased to do its part in supporting Cooley Dickinson and its efforts to transform its Emergency Department into one that’s as up-to-date as possible and can unlock its full potential. We hope others will do the same.” 

One dollar will be donated by bankESB for every two dollars donated to the Emergency Department campaign through December 31, up to $500,000. Anyone interested can send contributions to to the Cooley Dickinson Hospital Development Office, P.O. Box 329, Northampton, MA  01061-0329 or made on the organization’s website.

Dr. Lynnette Watkins, president, and CEO of Cooley Dickinson Health Care states, “The Emergency Department is, in essence, our front door and often patients and their families who come in for care are at their most vulnerable. We need to provide a safe, warm, welcoming environment to every patient, and this campaign will help ensure that we can.”

“We rely on great community partners, like bankESB, who give so generously in support of the care that we provide every day,” added Watkins. “This challenge grant is a wonderful opportunity for you to make a gift that has an even greater impact because of bankESB’s generosity.  I encourage everyone to help us meet this challenge.  And know that your gift supports the care that is provided here, in your community.”

The bank has a charitable program known as “The Giving Tree.” This program runs through the ideation of making communities better by having its people work together. Problems become smaller through this approach. Over the past decade, more than $1 million will be given by the bank to Cooley Dickinson. This supported Cooley Dickinson including the new unified cancer center, The Breast Center.