CHARLIE’S CHAMPIONS FOUNDATION CONTINUES ITS TRADITION OF GIVING TO WINTHROP’S CANCER CENTER FOR KIDS
Garden City residents Tara and John Schmitt, creators of Charlie’s Champions Foundation, along with their son, Charlie, recently visited the Cancer Center for Kids (CCFK) at Winthrop-University Hospital to present an extraordinary donation in the amount of $35,000, bringing the Foundation’s total giving to the CCFK in 2012 to $95,000.
Charlie’s Champions Foundation recently donated $35,000 to Winthrop’s Cancer Center for Kids (CCFK. Pictured at the donation were Glenn Schifano, music therapist at the CCFK; Mark Weinblatt, MD, Chief of the Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at Winthrop and Director of the CCFK; Garden City Residents Charlie, Tara and John Schmitt of Charlie’s Champions Foundation; and Linda Sweeney, Pediatric Development Manager of the CCFK.
“We never cease to be amazed by the generosity that is exhibited by Charlie’s Champions Foundation,” said Linda Sweeney, Pediatric Development Manager for the CCFK. “Over the years they have not only been ardent supporters of The Cancer Center for Kids, but have made many valuable contributions to other areas at Winthrop as well.”
“The Center has taken Charlie and our family through the most difficult of times. For this we are grateful and passionate about creating ways to continue funding this uniquely nurturing place,” said Mrs. Schmitt as she described how she and her husband, John, created Charlie’s Champions Foundation to honor their son, Charlie, a cancer survivor who was treated for leukemia at the CCFK.
At the same time, the Foundation has forged a noble mission: raising awareness and funds to benefit the CCFK at Winthrop, Nassau County’s largest outpatient facility for treating children with cancer and blood disorders. As a collaborative partner in the National Cancer Institute’s Children’s Oncology Group – an international consortium of hospitals recognized as leaders in the treatment of childhood cancers – the CCFK administers and coordinates research studies, disseminates clinical trials information, and manages protocols. The Center has established comprehensive psychosocial programs, co-facilitated by a licensed social worker, certified child life specialist, psychologist and music therapist, to enable children and their families to better cope with the diagnosis and treatment of pediatric cancer. Many of the CCFK’s psychosocial programs are offered free to patients and their families. Since these services are not reimbursed by insurance or third party provider funds, support from private donations by groups and individuals is vital.
The Schmitts shared the challenges of Charlie’s illness with friends and neighbors and thanks to their generosity and the continued support that the Foundation receives from the Long Island community, Charlie’s Champions has raised more than $620,000 to benefit pediatric patients at the CCFK.
For the past several years, Charlie’s Champions Foundation events like the now legendary Rage in the Cage, A Race Across America, the Ironman endurance marathon, the Golf Outing, Night of Rhythm & Blues and A Night of Music & Cheer have attracted thousands of youngsters, parents, neighbors, and friends to support the Foundation’s mission. Helping to meet the complex issues of pediatric cancer energizes Charlie’s Champions Foundation and interlocks with the CCFK’s own spirit and dedication to fostering hope and healing among young cancer patients and their families. Charlie’s Champions Foundation is already planning another year of unforgettable programs and activities. To learn more about Charlie’s Champions Foundation and events that are planned for 2013, visit www.charlieschampions.com.For more information about the Cancer Center for Kids at Winthrop, visit www.winthrop.org/cck or call (516) 663-9400. # # #