Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Toy Drive

The toy drive was a huge success! Jack and I got there very early and were able to do a live tv interview. This was such an amazing marketing opportunity for the charity. I should be getting a video clip of it soon, and will post it when I get it! For those of you that saw it on tv, I hope you got a kick out of seeing Jack cruising around on a hospital-bed-turned-Santa's-sleigh with Aaron Wilson.

Jack and I were asked to give a speech to the ambassadors of the hospital and the other donors to the toy drive. It seemed a little daunting at first, to be giving a speech to 100+ people, but Jack was up for the challenge. Who was I to stop him? :) We were asked to share Jack's story of what he's been through and what it is like to be a family with a child in the hospital. We also got to share the story of the charity, how it started, and what we do. The repsonse we received was fabulous. People were truly touched by Jack's resilience and inspired by his desire to give back to others.

Here's a video of the speech. It's about 5 minutes long, Jack's part is shortly after 3:30.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Holiday Toy Drive

This Wednesday we are participating in the Rockford Memorial Holiday Toy Drive! We are THRILLED to be donating all of this to the deserving kids that will be spending their holidays in the hospital.

As a family that has been through a hospital stay, our hearts go out to those that are spending their holidays inpatient. It lifts our spirits to know that we can help those families out and hopefully provide them with some happiness during their tough times!

Jack and I have been asked to speak at the toy drive. We're thrilled for the opportunity to share Jack's story and introduce our charity. Wish us luck! We will be doing a short interview with Aaron Wilson at 6:43 that morning. If you have a chance, turn your tv on!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Busy, Busy!

Lots of updating to do! We had a spectacular fundraiser at the Holiday Bazaar. We raised over $500!!!! All of that money is going to the Rockford Memorial Holiday toy drive on December 16th. We are looking forward to delivering carloads of toys to all those kids. At the Holiday Bazaar, Jack was recognized by the Foreston Cardinals Boys Basketball team. They had heard his story and felt inspired to work a little harder because of him. What an honor for a 6 year old boy!!! They gave him a basketball, which they all signed, and he sleeps with it every night. They also gave him a tshirt with his name on it that he's going to proudly wear to one of their basketball games!

We received a letter from Rush University Children's hospital the other day thanking us for our donation of 30 bears. They are using the bears in their pre-surgical program to introduce the kids that are having surgery to doctors wearing scrubs. We were SO excited to hear this, as a family that's been through the pre-surgical program we know how important it is to ease those fears ahead of time.

We also got a surprise nine donation of Build A Bear stuffed animals from a mom's group from Chicago! They heard of our charity and wanted to help. So, they went to Build A Bear and had a blast making bears for us to donate. Thank you so much to Debbie Johansen for giving us this idea.....now is there any mom's groups out there that want to match their donation? Let me know if you're interested.

I got to meet this week with 3 middle schoolers from Spectrum School. They applied and received a $2500 grant through In Youth We Trust program through the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois. The kids had applied for money to buy three video game systems, video games, and fifty teddy bears. All of these will be donated to the local hospital that they chose, RMH. And they aren't stopping there. They want to continue spreading the word of Little Hands Make A Big Difference, so they will be doing some advertising and marketing for us. They have ideas for more fundraisers they want to do...bake sales, candy grams....the sky is the limit with these kids! We are so proud of them and SO happy to have them on our team! Great job guys!