Philanthropy

All Articles in the Category ‘Philanthropy’

Princesses in Elaborate Outfits Bring Joy to Patients

Cheal PrincessOnce upon a time, in a hospital not so far away, a princess came to spread joy to kids at Seattle Children’s. Wherever the princess went, smiles followed. For one little girl, seeing the princess was a dream come true, and soon – the patient and the princess – became the best of friends.

This is the type of tale that plays out each month at Seattle Children’s thanks to volunteer Chael Stenchever who wears many crowns, transforming herself into a variety of princesses before visiting patients.

Stenchever’s elaborate costumes are nothing short of magical. Just watch her walk through the halls of the hospital during one of her visits and you’ll see that a princess costume can truly brighten a child’s day.

For 8-year-old Daisy Hader, that’s the experience she has when Stenchever comes to visit.

“Characters and stuffed animals are Daisy’s world,” said Lolly Hader, Daisy’s mother. “Meeting the princesses in real life connects her two worlds together – fairy tales and reality. It’s truly magical for her.” Read full post »

Meet Noelia, The Artist Who Designed Kasey Kahne’s Newest No. 5 Race Car

Noelia 1What is covered in spots, red and blue stripes, has a skyline and a music scale? The answer: Kasey Kahne’s newest No. 5 race car. This July at Daytona International Speedway, Kahne will drive the Hendrick Motorsports No. 5 Great Clips Chevrolet SS with a very special paint scheme that’s guaranteed to turn a few heads. But, what makes the car truly unique is the fact that it was designed by 8-year-old Noelia Gutierrez, a cancer patient at Seattle Children’s.

Noelia’s car design was inspired by all her favorite things – Barcelona FC soccer team, jaguars, singing and Seattle’s iconic skyline.

Her hope is that all of her favorite things will inspire Kahne as he races to reach the checkered flag. Read full post »

One Mom’s Journey Inspires Her to Build a Community for Kids and Families Affected by Pediatric Stroke

Addison

Addison, 3, suffered a stroke at birth.

Words can hit like a ton of bricks. For Kaysee Hyatt, it was four words that hit her so hard her world momentarily stopped.

At the start of a weekend camping trip with her family, she received a call from her doctor with the results of her daughter’s magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), “It was a stroke.” The world faded before Hyatt and the isolation of such a diagnosis set in, not only for her, but for her baby girl, Addison.

Before that moment, Hyatt had never heard of pediatric stroke, but as she would find out, it was not that uncommon. Approximately one in 2,000 newborns have a stroke each year. For children age 1 to 18, stroke occurs in about 1 out of every 20,000. Addison suffered her stroke during birth.

Addison’s family noticed something was wrong in her first few months of life; her mobility was limited and she completely favored her right side. When she was 6 months old, they received the diagnosis that explained why.

Stroke happens when blood that carries oxygen stops flowing to the brain. Within minutes, brain cells can begin to die, which can lead to stroke symptoms and can sometimes cause neurological issues or death. Read full post »

Group of Eighth-Grade Girls Raise Money and Awareness for Mental Health

IFG

A group of seventh-grade girls formed the Island Friends Junior Guild.

In March 2015, a group of seventh-grade girls from Mercer Island came up with the idea of starting a guild to support Seattle Children’s, the Island Friends Junior Guild. They banded together and picked a cause they rarely hear their peers talk about, but believe could use a little more support: mental health.

In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, members of the Island Friends Junior Guild are sharing their story to help inspire others to end the stigma around mental health and raise awareness for Seattle Children’s Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine Unit (PBMU).

“The PBMU doesn’t get much attention,” said Tara Manhas, an Island Friends Junior Guild member. “Mental health isn’t really seen as a positive thing. There’s a negative stigma around it. We want to change that.”

Seattle Children’s Hospital Guild Association is the largest all-volunteer fundraising network for any hospital in the nation. In total, there are 450 different guilds that raise money for the hospital, and out of all 450 guilds, one exclusively supports the PBMU. Read full post »

Miss Seattle Gives Back to the Hospital That Saved Her Life

Miss Seattle - Baby

Posey-Grager signs a children’s book for a young patient.

The halls of Seattle Children’s Hospital are a familiar place to Joell Posey-Grager, Miss Seattle 2016, and her family. Now 24, before she was wearing crowns and singing to audiences, she was a patient at Seattle Children’s.

Recently, she returned to the hospital not as a patient, but as a visitor to help brighten the day for other patients like her. With a little help from two very special guests, RJ Mitte, from the popular television show “Breaking Bad”, and Romi Dames, from Disney’s “Hannah Montana,” that’s exactly what they did.

Posey-Grager has always wanted to give back to the hospital that saved her life. Like the patients she visited in the inpatient playroom at Seattle Children’s, she understands the challenges of being in the hospital as a child so what better way to spread cheer than with a glittering crown and a story of hope. Read full post »

Researchers Work Toward New Type 1 Diabetes Therapies For Patients Like Juliana

Juliana Graceffo, 11, has type 1 diabetes. She must test her blood sugar throughout the day and take carefully calculated doses of insulin.

Children with type 1 diabetes and their families have to do several calculations throughout the day to stay healthy. Did my daughter check her blood sugar before breakfast? Does she need an extra snack because she has gym class? Is there someone at school to help my child check her blood sugar?

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that injures the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas and leads to a lifelong requirement of daily insulin injections. It is a considerable burden of care on patients and parents, who effectively never get a rest from the demands of staying healthy and safe.

According to the American Diabetes Association, about 1.25 million Americans have type 1 diabetes. A new $1 million grant from The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust will get doctors and scientists at Seattle Children’s Research Institute one step closer to better treatment for type 1 diabetes by studying the use of immunotherapy to treat the condition. The work is in collaboration with researchers at Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason (BRI)Read full post »

Young and Old Working Together to End Child Abuse

KDA group of Kappa Delta (KD) sorority sisters from the University of Washington (UW) and an elderly knitting group at a retirement home in Seattle might seem like an unexpected duo but together they’re perfectly aligned in their missions. Every year, these two very different groups do their part to help support ending child abuse, a reality that unfortunately affects millions of children each year.

Raising money for newborns

Inside the KD sorority house on UW’s campus, a group is gathered together chatting. The topic isn’t what someone might expect to overhear from a group of 18-year-old young women. Instead of talking about relationships and homework, they’re hard at work planning the sorority’s 20th annual auction to support Seattle Children’s Protection, Advocacy & Outreach Program and Prevent Child Abuse America.

Since partnering with Seattle Children’s in 2009, the KD sorority has raised more than $300,000 for the program, which helps parents of newborns in Washington learn about infant crying and recommended coping skills before they leave the hospital through a video-based training program called “Period of PURPLE Crying.” Read full post »

New Year, Fresh Start For a Little Girl With a Song of Her Own

Gabby and KimMilestones deserve a celebration. At least that’s what Seattle Children’s Pediatric Advanced Care Team thought when 9-year-old Gabby Krueger, a longtime patient at Seattle Children’s, received some good news the week before Christmas. After 14 weeks in the hospital, doctors gave the family the green light to go home.

“We’ve been here a really long time,” said Kim Sistek, Gabby’s mother. “We were really excited to go home.”

The news came after Gabby showed improvement in motility. For three years, Gabby has needed assistance going to the bathroom. She’s needed to use enemas to pass stool on her own. Her parents were beginning to have conversations with doctors about what Gabby’s life would look like if she lost motility. Her outcome was looking bleak. But just a couple weeks ago, Gabby made an improvement. Read full post »

Young Philanthropists Help Make Holidays Bright for Kids at Seattle Children’s

Toy Drive

Tonya Ward poses with hundreds of toys donated by children at Cedarhurst Elementary.

Sometimes the littlest of hearts can be the most generous. Children at The Bear Creek School and Cedarhurst Elementary School are proving just that. They are helping make the holiday a little brighter, and warmer for kids at Seattle Children’s this holiday.

Spreading holiday cheer

Spending the holidays away from home and in a hospital bed can be a difficult reality for some children. They may wonder what the holidays will bring, or if Santa will be able to find them. For children who are ill, a toy or a comfort item, like a blanket, can mean the world.

“I couldn’t imagine having to spend Christmas in the hospital,” said Tonya Ward, a teacher’s aid at Cedarhurst Elementary. “It’s an incredible feeling to know we’re making a difference in a child’s life.” Read full post »

Russell Wilson and Amazon Bring Holiday Cheer to Seattle Children’s

RW, Ciara and Amazon 1200x630

Families at Seattle Children’s Hospital and Odessa Brown Children’s Clinic (OBCC) received a special delivery this week thanks to Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and Amazon. Two larger-than-life gift boxes filled with toys, Amazon devices and gift cards brightened the day for kids at the hospital and OBCC, a community clinic located in Seattle’s Central District which provides medical, dental, mental health and nutrition services to families, regardless of their ability to pay.

Partnering with Russell Wilson

Tuesdays are usually an exciting day at Seattle Children’s because of Russell Wilson’s weekly visits to the hospital, but this Tuesday’s visit was extra merry. Christmas came early for patients and families at Seattle Children’s. And Wilson invited a special guest to help spread even more holiday cheer, Ciara.

Wilson’s, Why Not You Foundation and Amazon partnered together to donate Amazon devices, like the Fire HD and Kindle Paperwhite, to every patient at the hospital. Wide eyes and big smiles filled the hospital today and made today’s blue Tuesday one of the brightest and most festive of the year. Read full post »