Sick kids won't have to wait
As an American Family Insurance employee, I am proud of my company’s $1 million pledge to help finish the “Sick Kids Can’t Wait” capital campaign for American Family Children’s Hospital (AFCH). As a mom of a kid treated at AFCH, I am simply grateful – because I can see what’s next.
American Family Children’s Hospital will add 26 critical care beds, an imaging center and additional heart services. Twenty-six new beds mean 26 more families to feed and support during their stays.
With current annual fundraising programs and the capital campaign nearly complete, dollars are now freed up to fund patient and family-centered programs. The possibilities are many: Fellowships, nurse educators and enhancements to AFCH’s ongoing Child Life Services program – or, as I call it, “the concierge of AFCH.”
This program is what knits together patient- and family-centered care.
As a parent of a patient, I am amazed by the Child Life Service programs and happy this will be an area of focus once the capital campaign is complete. This area supports 24-hour playrooms and a teen lounge, a school, Tyler’s Place (play area for siblings) and Positive Image Center (where kids learn to cope with appearance-altering illnesses).
In addition, Child Life Service programs provide family meals, gas cards and lodging during lengthy visits. It also acts as a patient liasion and helps prep young patients or their siblings for their stays in the hospital.
As the mom of a kid with a chronic illness, I have been this family – more than once. I’ve been the family who gets admitted at midnight after being in the emergency room all evening and there is an offer of a hot meal, laundry service or entertainment for an anxious kiddo.
These services, along with exceptional medical care, make American Family Children’s Hospital the world-class facility it is today. And, with the capital campaign complete, even more can be done to assist patients and their families.
Many have asked if I am surprised by American Family’s $1 million pledge. Not a bit. Since American Family’s original flagship gift ten years ago of $10 million, our employees, agents and retirees have continued to donate money and give their time as volunteers, and board and committee members.
At a minimum, my son, Jack, visits the hospital quarterly for check-ups. From American Family’s namesake out front to the names of friends, family and co-workers adorning clinic rooms as a result of their donations, I am reminded to be grateful… for world-class care for my Jack; for a company that gives back so generously and supports my dream of what’s next for all sick kids cared for by American Family Children’s Hospital.
Editor’s note: Join our support of American Family Children’s Hospital. Donate to the hospital’s campaign, or get involved with these upcoming fund-raising events: