There’s been enormous goodwill shown to pediatric patients in recent months as thousands of toys and gifts poured in to the Hospital’s Child Life program, which helps sick children and their families understand and cope with being hospitalized, as well as to the Cancer Center for Kids! Among the many community contributors:
The Kiwanas Club of Mineola once again donated proceeds from their annual Golf Outing to benefit Child Life
- The Children’s Heart Foundation
- Kiwanis Club of County Seat, Mineola, Inc.
- Michael Magro Foundation
- NYC District Council of Carpenters
- New York Islanders
- Rosario’s Giving Tree
- Senator Elaine Phillips
- Williston Park Rotary
Here are some heartwarming highlights
NY Islanders Nick Leddy (#2), Jason Chimera (#25) and goaltender Jaroslav Halak (#41) personally visited the Hagedorn Pediatric Inpatient Center and Cancer Center for Kids to bring cheer to young patients, and they easily scored. Eyes lit up as the players mingled among patients and families, and they gifted Islanders’ memorabilia. But it wasn’t only the children that were moved. Jason Chimera was clearly touched by a young man’s emotional reaction to receiving Islander game tickets, and for a moment, it seemed that Jason, too, had to recollect himself. The art of giving works both ways. Thank you, NY Islanders!
New York State Senator Elaine Phillips delivered over 1,000 toys to the Child Life program. Residents of Phillips’ 7th Senate District rallied for the toy drive with donations coming from 12 local schools, six libraries and community residents across the district. Toys poured in from schools in Carle Place, Elmont, Floral Park, Great Neck, Manhasset and more, and libraries in Franklin Square, Port Washington, Shelter Rock, and Williston among others. Said Senator Elaine Phillips of her visit to the Hospital, “Thank you to NYU Winthrop Hospital and to all those who donated…your generosity was remarkable...”
Rosario Cascio is only nine-years-old, but it’s never too soon to set a precedent of giving. And so the Deer Park fourth grader founded “Rosario’s Giving Tree,” a holiday drive to collect toys to donate to hospitalized children. A local radio host, Steven Vaccaro (WGBB 1240 AM/95.9 FM, WLIE 540 AM and Optimum Cable) got wind of the young boy’s initiative. Suddenly things snowballed and the gifts poured in, with Rosario personally delivering the toys to NYU Winthrop Hospital where he’d been born.
Lauren Lanzillotta is a board member of the Children’s Heart Foundation NY Chapter, which helps advance the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of congenital heart defects. Lauren is also mother to a young son, Ronald III, who was treated for a congenital heart condition at NYU Winthrop. She saw first-hand the loving care provided by Hospital staff, including through its Child Life program, and together with her husband, Ronald Jr., wanted to pay it forward. Who would have guessed that Lauren’s grassroots program, which used the power of social media to spread the word, would result in more than 1,000 toys donated?! Talk about hearts!