Feature Story

Campaign Fuels Enduring Mission

Emmy ColeWhen Seattle Children’s opened its doors in 1907, our founders had a clear mission for the hospital – to care for every child, regardless of their ability to pay. Thanks to unwavering guild support, It Starts With Yes: The Campaign for Seattle Children’s is advancing our core mission to care for every child and help families when they need it most. Your gifts helped Emmy Cole’s parents focus on their little girl’s health rather than the cost of medical care needed to restore it as well as supporting the clinical care and groundbreaking research that saved her life.

With a smile that lights up a room, Emmy is a spirited 5-year-old who battled and beat a deadly cancer thanks to the experts at Seattle Children’s. In the span of just three weeks in 2015, Emmy went from complaining of hip pain to walking with a limp to barely being able to walk at all. After several visits, their pediatrician advised her parents to go to Seattle Children’s Emergency Department to confirm a suspicion that Emmy, then just 2, had rheumatoid arthritis.

Instead, an MRI revealed a high-risk neuroblastoma – a deadly cancerous tumor that started in the toddler’s mid-back and wound its way around her spine. “The first day we were in complete shock and disbelief,” remembers her mom, Dani. “The second day, we were terrified. By the third day, we said, ‘How are we going to do this? Do we have to sell our house?’”

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Guilds Say Yes! It Starts With Yes Campaign Achievements

Anna Clise Award WinnerSeattle Children’s Guild Association has raised more than $96 million for It Starts With Yes: The Campaign for Seattle Children’s. These funds will propel hospital programs that will help us meet our goal to ensure that more families can count on hope, care and cures – now and into the future.

A second Guild Association campaign goal is adding 325 more guild members to the Guardians’ Circle, a group honoring those who have included Seattle Children’s in their charitable estate plans. If you have already named Seattle Children’s in your will, please let us know because we would love to recognize your generosity. The guild member quotes below illustrate a variety of ways – many of them surprisingly simple – that you can leave a lasting hospital legacy.

Heartwarming drive targets hunger

FamilyThe Guild Association’s 2018 Heartwarming Drive helps address a basic need for patients and their families: food.

“We’ve found that in some departments, up to 80% of families seeking inpatient and outpatient services at Seattle Children’s don’t have enough money for food,” says Kelly Fisher, manager of the Food Security Pilot. “Poor nutrition affects patients’ ability to heal, recover and stay healthy.”

Surveys completed at Seattle Children’s Odessa Brown Children’s Clinic, and in the dialysis unit, peritoneal dialysis clinic and cystic fibrosis clinic at the hospital main campus, show a high number of families have low-to–very low food security – this ranges from poor food quality and variety to conditions where adults and children skip meals. To better address this need, Fisher is working on implementing a food security screening for all patients, starting with dialysis and cystic fibrosis patients.

“The Food Security Community Partnership Fund provides patients and families with resources for food, nutrition programs, advocacy and community outreach in collaboration with local and statewide experts and families,” she says.

Guild members can help fund this work through our Heartwarming Drive; online donations go to hospital meals and grocery store gift cards for families in need.

Give online here, or call Emily Downing at 206-987-6833.

Bargain Boutiques update

Bargain Boutique Spring 2018Forty-year veterans of the Jean Stewart Jordan Guild in Edmonds, co-chairs Patsy Linde and Judy Cromwell have an impressive history of saying yes to Seattle Children’s: “Many of us are retired educators, so kids are our passion,” says Linde. “And through our children and grandchildren we’ve all had a direct experience at Seattle Children’s, and been more than thrilled with the care received.”

As members of one of the top guilds that donate to the Bargain Boutiques year after year, Linde and Cromwell along with their longtime friends have made the stores their annual hospital project. Over a designated weekend each spring, they aim to fill the Boutiques’ collection truck with only the best clothing and other donated items suitable for what they consider the “Tiffany’s of thrift stores.”

“We couldn’t run these stores without guild support – and we’re so thankful to the Jean Stewart Jordan Guild members for all their help over the years,” says Eva Campbell, director, Bargain Boutiques. “Please share your items with us – drop them off at one of our stores or call and we’ll pick them up! Thank you!”

To schedule a donation pickup, call 206-448-1233. Pictured above left is the Jean Stewart Jordan Guild Bargain Boutiques donation-collection super team.

Learn more about the Bargain Boutiques, or visit a store near you.

Campaign focus: Unlocking the mysteries of the developing brain

Erin CordryIt Starts With Yes calls on us all to continue and build on the hospital’s enduring goal to assist families in need; expand necessary healthcare and research facilities; and invest in clinical programs to revolutionize children’s healthcare. Neurological issues are one major focus of the campaign. We will invest in recent, dramatic advances in precision medicine, personalized for each child, to more effectively diagnose and treat a wide range of brain disorders – such as epilepsy, autism, brain tumors, ADHD and other mental and behavioral health issues.

“In our lifetimes, we’ll see a new era of understanding how brain disorders are connected – to each other and to brain development. Philanthropy, coupled with the incredible talent at Seattle Children’s, is fueling discoveries that will benefit our children and will help millions of other kids and families around the world.” – Erin Cordry, Yes campaign neurosciences committee co-chair, and president and founder of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Research Guild

Leaving a legacy: Our yes is our legacy

Legacy gifts support care for future generations of children and help our researchers discover tomorrow’s cures. These gifts are a targeted focus of the It Starts With Yes campaign. We extend a special thank you to the new Guardians’ Circle members who are helping us advance towards our Guild Association campaign goal of 325 new guild legacy gifts. If you have not already left a legacy, we hope you will join them today!

Cole Hardman“I said yes to Seattle Children’s in my estate plan because I want to ensure that all kids have access to healthcare, regardless of their ability to pay. This is why I chose to designate my gift to the Uncompensated Care Fund.”

– Cole Hardman, Marion Finley Guild

Sharon Friel“I say yes because who can say no to Seattle Children’s? Seattle Children’s never turns a child away and we can all feel good about that.”

– Sharon Friel, Milnora de B. Roberts Guild

Anne Marie and Quincy Milton“We say yes because those who can must help those who can’t. We are eternally grateful for Seattle Children’s.”

– Ann Marie and Quincy Milton, Marion Finley Guild

Zoe Erickson“I am leaving a legacy to Seattle Children’s because it is extremely important. It helps the kids and it feels awesome!”

– Zoe Erickson, Kent Guild

Many guild members have included Seattle Children’s in their estate plan but have not yet informed us. Please let us know if you have left the hospital a legacy gift so we can properly thank you and make sure you are counted towards our campaign goal. Thank you! Call 206-987-5098 or email us.