It’s time again to show how powerful $1 can be.
Thousands of Kids Day volunteers will line streets in Fresno, Tulare, Madera, Kings, Merced and Mariposa counties on Tuesday selling special editions of The Bee. They’re trying to break the goal of raising $530,000 for Valley Children’s Hospital.
That total would go along with the $6.8 million that has been raised over the past 27 years for the not-for-profit hospital.
It all started in 1988, when ABC30 and The Fresno Bee joined forces to start what would become the annual Kids Day publication to benefit Valley Children’s Hospital. That year, $56,000, a little more than one-tenth the amount that is the target for this year’s fundraiser, was raised.
Kids Day fundraising helps provide the most advanced technology, recruit the best pediatric specialists, improve care and services for the most complex patients and develop pediatric specialty programs.
The hospital’s nonprofit status is why Fresno Bee president and publisher Tom Cullinan says, “On Tuesday, March 3, I encourage you to have your $1 ready to support this very worthy cause.”
In the past, many people have given more than the $1 suggested price, some making donations because of a personal connection to the hospital that sits on 50 acres in Madera County just north of the San Joaquin River. Some have been treated there. Others have had a child, relative or friend who needed treatment.
If you don’t see one of the volunteers, there are other ways to help. Text GEORGE to 90999 to make a $5 donation or go to Valley Children’s website.
This year’s Kids Day edition of The Bee will include:
• A look at a father and daughter who have both been treated at Valley Children’s Hospital. Years ago, the dad lost a leg to bone cancer, but his time recuperating at the hospital was so positive he decided to go into the medical profession and now works at the facility.
• The hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care unit is a Level IV, the highest ranking for any such facility. That means the hospital can take care of any medical situation with newborns except doing transplants.
• A team of Home Care department therapists, nurses and others hit the road to visit patients in their homes.
• Child Life specialists, assistants and volunteers work as liaisons between medical staff and patients.
• The hospital’s imaging department has MRI machines now with SensaVue screens that enable patients to view a video during an exam.
• Neymar and his parents, Viviana and Juan Mendez, are this year’s official ambassadors for the hospital. Despite numerous medical problems, the family remains upbeat and optimistic because of the treatment Neymar has received.
All of these stories are examples of the work that continues to go on at the local facility helped by a donation as small as $1.