November 19, 2015 – Southeast Georgia Health System director of Pastoral
Care, Rev. Wright A. Culpepper, D.Min., was presented the prestigious
Georgia Hospital Heroes Award at the Georgia Hospital Association’s
(GHA) Annual Meeting on Nov. 11, 2015. Rev. Culpepper, who was one of
only 10 individuals statewide to receive the award, was recognized for
his work in the community through FaithWorks, a faith-based organization
partnering with the Health System as well as churches, businesses and
individuals to maximize resources to meet human needs.
“Wright is a tireless giver with a heart of gold,” says Patrick
D. Ebri, Ph.D., FACHE, vice president, Human Resources, Southeast Georgia
Health System. “He has incredible business acumen, which he puts
to use every day for the benefit of the community rather than self. Despite
all his great personal qualities and successes, he has managed to remain
humble and true to his calling.”
Rev. Culpepper has spent more than 20 years working diligently to improve
the circumstances of residents in Glynn County and Southeast Georgia,
and countless individuals have benefited from his generosity and dedication
to caring for others.
Within the Health System, Rev. Culpepper and his team of chaplains provide
on-site pastoral support 40 hours a week, plus on-call support 24/7. In
2014, they provided pastoral services to 2,200 Health System patients
and their families as well as team members, physicians and volunteers.
As executive director of FaithWorks, however, Rev. Culpepper’s work
extends beyond the walls of the Health System. When he identifies problems
that prevent people from moving toward good health, he collaborates with
others at the Health System and in the community to develop poverty-related
ministries and services that help advance health.
One such program is Sparrows Nest, a ministry that distributes food on
a weekly basis and provides emergency financial assistance to individuals
who have experienced financial crisis due to an accident, illness, fire
or a death in the family. Another program is the Health Care Ministry,
which provides information and services to chronically ill patients, especially
those who are elderly or homebound.
When Rev. Culpepper became aware of homeless people who could not be discharged
from the hospital because they did not have an address, he developed a
Homeless Transition Program that includes a house for temporary lodging
and case management services to assist these individuals with their next
steps. FaithWorks also created Open Doors, a ministry that provides case
management, mentoring and education to help individuals integrate back
into the community after incarceration, and The Well, a day hospitality
and resource center for people that are homeless.
“Rev. Culpepper has launched extraordinary programs in the community
that afford countless individuals the ability to be safe, happy and healthy,”
said GHA President and CEO, Earl Rogers. “We thank him for his dedication
to improving the health of the people of Southeast Georgia. He is a most-deserving
recipient of this award.”