wonders A publication for the donors of Childrenâ€™s Healthcare of Atlanta
Meet Darrell Cullins, a second-generation Childrenâ€™s patient who has learned how to manage his asthma
One doctor and his team are tracking the latest advances in Sickle Cell Disease research
Learn how our Chief Operations Officer works to ensure the best care for every patient
At Children’s, our mission is to make kids better today and healthier tomorrow. Two years ago, we refreshed our mission to recognize our commitment to improving the overall health and well-being of our community’s children. While high-quality clinical care remains core to our not-for-profit organization, we know we can do more to help kids grow up healthy and strong—and out of our hospitals. Featured in this issue is the story of 9-year-old Darrell Cullins, a great example of Children’s unique approach to helping a family better manage asthma so they
can all lead less stressful lives. Since Georgia has one of the highest rates of
of Atlanta Foundation
“asthma care path” at our Hughes Spalding hospital that measured the impact
asthma cases among children in the nation, Children’s was excited to test a new of connecting a child’s pediatrician, hospital care team, outpatient provider, day
Board of Trustees
care, school and home.
Thomas M. Holder, Chairman Douglas K. Garges, Vice Chairman
The results were remarkable. Hospital utilization decreased by 83 percent; emergency department visits decreased by 84 percent; and school absenteeism decreased by 87 percent. As we look toward the future, we hope to expand this
Jack Markwalter Jr.
W. Paul Bowers
more time at home and school, and less time in a hospital environment.
Virginia Feltus Brewer
Richard J. McKay
Donor support and your shared belief in our mission will allow us to explore
Robert W. Bruce Jr., M.D.
John L. Montag
James A. Carlos
Jack Cay IV
Ira L. Moreland
Patricia L. Dickey
William C. Pate
David H. Fagin, M.D.
Nancy E. Rafuse
James D. Fortenberry, M.D.
Adam T. Fuller
Chairman, Board of Trustees
Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Foundation
Eugene A. Hayes III
John L. Simms II
Donna W. Hyland
Mary Ellen Imlay
Mark Kauffman Scott MacLellan
level of care management to help children with other chronic conditions spend
this new ground. Ultimately, Children’s exists to care for kids: your kids, your grandkids, as well as all those throughout the state who need specialized care. That’s what makes Children’s such an incredible place, and we deeply appreciate all you do to help us ensure we are here—for the sick, the injured and the healthy children—for generations to come. Sincerely, Thomas M. Holder
Connect with us
Part of the family When Darrell Cullins was diagnosed with asthma at 3 years old, his mother knew just what to do. As
an asthma sufferer herself, Carrie Cloud had been treated at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and knew
As a not-for-profit organization,
her son would get the care he needed at our Asthma
Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
Center. Now an athletic 9-year-old, Darrell knows
pledges to direct the greatest portion
how to stay healthy—on and off the playground.
of community gifts to serving patients and their families. To that end, we produced this report in-house, using the most cost-efficient paper and
Tracking sickle cell disease A generous gift is helping the Children’s Sickle Cell Disease Program improve treatment and health
outcomes for children with sickle cell disease. With two multi-year grants, the program aims to understand which treatments work best in which patients and why—information that eventually will help thousands of children nationwide.
Questions & answers
printing techniques. This book is printed on paper containing a minimum of 10 percent post-consumer waste and is manufactured in an environmentally friendly manner. We encourage you to recycle this magazine or pass it along to friends so they can learn about Children’s.
Help save us money
Rex Adams joined Children’s Healthcare of
Atlanta in June 2013 as Chief Operating Officer.
to sign up to receive this
Educated at both West Point and Harvard
Business School, he brings with him more than 20 years of business leadership experience in an impressive variety of industries. Adams is
and save us related printing and postage costs.
excited to help continue the Children’s tradition of excellence in pediatric innovation.
8 Highlights & happenings 10 Around Children’s 14 Friends around town 17 Mark your calendar
As a not-for-profit organization, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta produces materials in-house using the most cost-efficient paper and printing techniques. If you wish to opt out of future communications from the Children’s Foundation, please visit www.choa.org/preferences. Some physicians and affiliated healthcare professionals on the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta team are independent providers and are not our employees.
2 wonders small
Part of the family When Darrell Cullins was diagnosed with asthma at 3 years old, his mother knew just what to do. As an asthma sufferer herself, Carrie Cloud had been treated at Childrenâ€™s Healthcare of Atlanta and knew her son would get the care he needed at our Asthma Center. Now an athletic 9-yearold, Darrell knows how to stay healthyâ€”on and off the playground.
4 wonders small
arrell Cullins loves to be outdoors. This active 9-year-old
headed in.” After his diagnosis, the toddler was sent home with
is always on the go, whether he’s playing basketball,
an arduous home care routine—steroids, an inhaler and even a
riding his bicycle or exploring his neighborhood park.
home breathing machine.
For a kid like Darrell, however, asthma can keep him in the house and away from doing the things he loves.
Before coming to the center, Darrell had been in and out of the Emergency Department 11 times for asthma-related issues. He was
”Telling him he has to stay inside today just because the pollen
missing a lot of school, and his mother was constantly missing work
count is high—it’s hard,” said his mother, Carrie Cloud. “He still
to take care of him.
wants to go.”
The Asthma Center turned out to be a natural choice for Darrell
Around other kids, Darrell wants to play just as hard as they do.
and his mother, and a perfect example of how Children’s has
Carrie has him sit out when his asthma starts to flare up and
taken care of patients across generations. “I’ve been with Hughes
reminds him that the other kids don’t have to pause because they
Spalding all my life,” Carrie said. Not only does Darrell receive
don’t have asthma. “If it was up to Darrell, he’d be puffing his
asthma treatment in the same location his mother did as a child,
inhaler and running at the same time,” she said.
but he also sees the same doctors. “I wouldn’t have it any other way. They know my medical history, and Darrell’s,” she said.
Thanks to the Asthma Center at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, he is learning how to manage his asthma and lead a more normal life.
And starting next month, the center will begin treating Carrie’s youngest. Darrell’s little sister Danayah was diagnosed with
When he was 3, Darrell was diagnosed with severe asthma, a
asthma when she was just a year old. Her big brother will be
possibility his mother had been worried about because she too
there to help every step of the way, though. The two siblings are
developed asthma at the same age. “Having had asthma all my
very close and even share the same birthday. Soon, they will also
life, I knew all the signs,” Carrie said. “I knew the direction he was
share the same doctors.
For Carrie and Darrell, the center’s staff truly feels like family.
Darrell’s mom said, he was eager to demonstrate his new found
“I could pick up the phone right now and call them and they
knowledge. While at the park one day, Darrell approached a man
would recognize my voice,” Carrie said. Considering a medical
who was smoking a cigarette. “That’s a trigger,” the boy told him.
clinic “a home away from home” may seem strange, but for
“You’re going to trigger my asthma! Can you please put it out?”
Darrell and his mother, it’s reassuring to have a warm and caring
Carrie was thrilled that her son was being so proactive. “He made
atmosphere in which to receive treatment.
me so proud. And the man put the cigarette out, too,” she added.
The center’s advocacy work further demonstrates how family-
Since beginning his treatment, Darrell has a much better handle on
centered they truly are. At Carrie’s request, staff from Children’s
his asthma. He’s only been to the Emergency Department twice,
stepped in when caregivers at his day care center made him go
a fact that his mother attributes to the superb care he receives at
outside during recess in the winter months.
Children’s. “It’s a wonderful place,” Carrie said, “they really, really
On Darrell’s behalf, the team from the Asthma Center called,
care about kids’ health and their futures.”
faxed and even paid a personal visit to the day care to advocate
These days, Darrell ventures outside and plays with other kids
for Darrell. They convinced the day care staff that his asthma
more, but he’s learned from his healthcare team how to be
triggers were serious enough to keep him inside. “They work
proactive. He understands more fully why he has to take breaks
wonders up there, they really do,” Carrie said, relieved that the
and why he has to be careful around his triggers.
day care changed its policy with encouragement from Children’s.
And on the playground, if new kids notice him pretreating with
Through the Asthma Center and programs like Camp Breathe Easy,
his inhaler and ask questions, he confidently responds, “I have
a week-long residential camp that encourages self-confidence,
asthma, and I have to make sure it doesn’t flare up,” before
Darrell has learned how to manage his asthma and how to identify
running back onto the playground. And for Darrell, getting back
situations that can cause attacks. After learning about his triggers,
out there is the most important thing.
6 wonders small
Tracking sickle cell disease A generous gift is helping the Children’s Sickle Cell Disease Program improve treatment and health outcomes for children with sickle cell disease (SCD). With two multi-year grants, the program aims to understand which treatments work best in which patients and why—information that eventually will help thousands of children nationwide. Most children fear the pain associated with a scraped knee or a
This program has enabled Peter Lane, M.D., Aflac Field Force
flu shot, but children with SCD fear the extreme episodes of pain
Children’s Chair for Sickle Cell Disease, shown right, and his
that can strike without warning as a symptom of their illness.
colleague Rodney Theodore, M.P.H., shown left, to develop a
These children and their families live constantly with the knowledge that at any moment a trip to the emergency department may be required. SCD reduces a child’s quality of life, resulting in extended hospital stays and many missed school days. For most patients with the disease, there is no cure. The Abraham J. and Phyllis Katz Foundation has given two multiyear gifts for the purpose of establishing the Children’s Sickle Cell Disease Health Services and Outcomes Research Program at the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center.
one-of-a-kind clinical database that can monitor in real time the effectiveness of various SCD treatments.“SCD is the single most common life-threatening genetic illness in childhood,” Dr. Lane said, “yet, historically, it has received far less funding than other, less frequent diseases.” The disparity stems in part from the fact that SCD disproportionately affects individuals in African-American and other minority communities. The program’s tracking system is absolutely crucial to the field of SCD research because it is helping to close this gap.
Spring 2014 Existing research provides relatively few insights into understanding the extreme variability of this complex disease.
Sickle cell disease
Some children with SCD experience symptoms more severely than others, some more often than others. Many believe that a variety of environmental factors are largely responsible for this extreme variability. This new research program will help Dr. Lane and his colleague identify those factors and develop strategies to address them. “What the grant has allowed us to do is develop an institutional clinical database so we can track the clinical course of each
What is sickle cell disease? Sickle cell disease (SCD) is an inherited blood disorder that affects the red blood cells. Red blood cells are responsible for transporting oxygen throughout the body. Healthy red blood cells are normally round and flexible as they travel quickly through blood vessels.
patient,” Dr. Lane said. He noted that they will also have the
For people with SCD, however, the red blood cells are
ability to monitor the effectiveness of various kinds of treatment
shaped differently. They become rigid and are shaped
on the largest patient population in the country.
like sickles or crescent moons, and they get stuck more easily in blood vessels. When this happens, the
Indeed, our Aflac Cancer Center is the largest pediatric SCD
sickled red blood cells cannot deliver the much-needed
program in the country, with 1,758 active patients in 2013. In metro
oxygen to the body as easily as healthy red blood cells,
Atlanta, Children’s sees 96 percent of all pediatric SCD patients—a
which can cause many complications.
huge population that makes the Aflac Cancer Center a prime place
How is sickle cell disease treated?
to conduct population-based research. Recognized as one of the leading pediatric cancer, hematology and bone marrow transplant (BMT) programs in the country, the Aflac Cancer Center is committed to providing children and young adults
For most people, there is no cure for SCD. However, there are treatments that can help prevent complications and manage symptoms. Individuals with SCD fight infections by taking antibiotics, and they manage
with a brighter future through advanced medical treatment, family-
the pain caused during crises with pain-relieving
centered care, a child-friendly environment and innovative research.
medications. Regular doctor visits are also important
With the new database, it will become easier to identify the
to keep SCD under control.
factors that impact the progression of the disease and response
There are currently three main treatment options in use
to treatment. “It will help us to predict disease severity and to
for combating SCD. Hydroxyurea is a drug that works
learn how to focus more aggressive treatments on those patients
by stimulating the production of fetal hemoglobin, a
destined to be more severely affected by SCD,” Dr. Lane said.
type of hemoglobin produced in newborn babies that
Children with SCD are born with a lifelong illness, but this program will help them and their families begin coping with the effects of the disease earlier and with more accuracy. It will also help optimize the likelihood that children with SCD maintain a better quality of life and succeed academically as they prepare for transition to a
may help prevent the formation of sickle cells. Blood transfusions are another option for individuals living with SCD. Increasing the number of healthy red blood cells through regular infusions of healthy blood helps to relieve anemia and can reduce the chances of stroke.
healthy and productive adulthood.
For those experiencing severe complications resulting
The implementation of this program also highlights the need for
a solution. A bone marrow transplant is a serious
private donations in turbulent economic times, especially as grants
procedure that involves replacing bone marrow
from the National Institutes of Health and the federal agencies
affected by SCD with healthy bone marrow from a
become increasingly hard to come by because of budget cuts.
donor. This new bone marrow in the patient will then
from SCD, bone marrow transplantation may be
generate healthy red blood cells. “Private donors are critically important in advancing healthcare and ultimately improving the lives of kids with chronic diseases,” Dr. Lane said. These donors ensure that Children’s continues to help children get better today and stay healthier tomorrow.
8 wonders small
Highlights & happenings Donor-funded facility fosters research partnerships A five-story, 200,000-square-foot Health Sciences Research Building was dedicated in October at Emory University. More than half the facility will be devoted to pediatric research through the Emory-Children’s Pediatric Research Center, a partnership between the Department of Pediatrics at Emory University School of Medicine and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. The research partnership also has key affiliates such as Georgia Institute of Technology. The approximately $90 million cost of the building was funded entirely by philanthropic donors, including an anonymous donor, Georgia Research Alliance, O. Wayne Rollins Foundation, Raymond F. Schinazi, Joseph B. Whitehead Foundation, Robert W. Woodruff Foundation, The Zeist Foundation, Inc. and many other generous contributors. The new building is attached by a walking bridge to the Emory-Children’s Center building adjacent to our Egleston hospital. At the heart of the building’s design is a simple idea: make it easy for researchers to get fresh inspiration from talking to other scientists.
Monthly gifts can make you a Hughes Hero A simple monthly gift can make a big impact for the children we care for at our Hughes Spalding hospital. Our Hughes Heroes support the children and families at Hughes Spalding. Located in downtown Atlanta, the hospital manages more than 80,000 patient visits each year, providing quality emergency services, primary care, asthma care, sickle cell disease treatment, developmental services and child protection. Visit choa.org/hughesheroes to learn more and make a secure gift.
Holiday giving surpasses $130,000 This holiday season, the community truly went “All In” with Children’s to help raise critically needed dollars. Our generous supporters helped us to raise over $130,000 during our third annual year-end fundraising campaign. More than 95 percent of donations were made online, and donors were able to purchase much-needed items from the wish list such as arts and crafts supplies, books, and red wagons for the patients in our hospitals.
Delta flies Aflac Cancer Center patients to the North Pole In December, Delta Air Lines took 42 Aflac Cancer Center patients on a magical trip to the North Pole. The patients met at the Children’s Office Park, where 27 limousines and drivers from the Greater Atlanta Limousine Association and eight Atlanta City Police officers were waiting to escort the children as they embarked on this holiday adventure. After arriving at the airport, the patients were escorted through security and met the captain of their flight to the North Pole. The patients boarded the Boeing 757 where they were served a Chick-fil-A lunch by Santa’s elves while enjoying Christmas carols. To make sure they had a lightning-fast trip to the North Pole, they were asked to keep their window shades drawn. Once the flight landed at the North Pole, the children were greeted by Hope and Will, Santa and many other members of Santa’s team. The children and parents then enjoyed sweet treats at Santa’s workshop while sharing their Christmas wish.
The Children’s Christmas Parade draws thousands to midtown More than 300,000 spectators gathered—and more than 500,000 WSB-TV viewers tuned in—to watch the 33rd annual Children’s Christmas Parade make its way through midtown Atlanta in December. The Southeast’s largest holiday parade brought families together for holiday fun and raised more than $100,000 for Children’s. The parade, which started in 1981, supported our Friends volunteers’ fundraising goals for Marcus Autism Center, the Children’s nursing and wellness programs, Hughes Spalding hospital, in addition to the Big Apple Circus Clown Unit and the Friends Research Fund. The exciting day featured more than 20 giant balloons, including crowd favorites Angry Birds and Clifford the Big Red Dog. Marching bands from all over metro Atlanta delighted bystanders with holiday music during the parade, which honored 6-year-old Luci Newton, the face of the parade.
DJs and patients team up for radiothon In October, the fifth annual Por Los Niños Radiothon raised more than $220,500 for Children’s, reaching a total of $1.1 million donated over the past five years. For two days every fall, on-air personalities from La Raza (102.3/100.1 FM) and La Mega (96.5 FM) share the mic with some of Atlanta’s most inspiring celebrities—the patients of Children’s—during the radiothon.
10 wonders small
Around Children’s Children’s celebrates 400th liver transplant with family In July 2013, 7-year-old Austin Farrell became the 400th liver transplant recipient at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Austin had experienced health complications related to both his liver and his heart. Physicians told his parents, Lisa and Jimmy, that Austin would likely need a transplant. The family traveled from Orlando, Fla., to meet with members of both the liver and cardiology teams at Children’s. Reassured that their son would be in the best hands, Lisa and Jimmy decided to proceed. Austin is now a healthy and happy little boy and has returned to school and his favorite activities. His family hasn’t forgotten the support they received in Atlanta. They returned in November to Children’s, where a celebration was held to honor Austin and mark the major milestone. Held in the garden at Egleston hospital, the event drew other transplant recipients and their families, who came together to celebrate life and the amazing work of the entire Children’s team. Visit choa.org/transplant to learn more about our services.
Grant awarded for sickle cell research In October 2013, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute awarded a $9.5 million grant to Emory University and the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center of Children’s for critical blood disorder research. The grant will fund research into lethal lung damage that can be fatal in children with sickle cell disease. It will provide about $2 million in funding each year over five years, fostering bench-to-bedside research to find treatment that could erase a complication of sickle cell disease called “acute chest syndrome.” Acute chest syndrome damages the lungs, causing them to fill with fluid and sometimes resulting in respiratory failure. The Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center treats the largest population of pediatric sickle cell patients in the nation and is one of the few institutions focused on combating acute chest syndrome. Visit choa.org/sicklecell to learn more about our program.
Cardiac collaboration fosters a lifetime of care Children’s and Emory Healthcare have solidified their relationship as partners in cardiac care through the creation of the Congenital Heart Center of Georgia. The collaboration creates one of the largest programs in the country—and the only one in Georgia—specializing in the treatment of children and adults with congenital heart disease (CHD). The comprehensive center, led by Robert Campbell, M.D., Brian Kogon, M.D., and Wendy Book, M.D., helps individuals with congenital heart defects receive appropriate lifelong care. Visit congenitalheartgeorgia.org to learn more about the Congenital Heart Center of Georgia.
Children’s brings snow to Atlanta Children’s kicked off an unusually cold and snowy winter in Atlanta this year by bringing “snow” to our patients at each of our three hospitals in early December. As the sun set on Dec. 2, machines sent fluffy, snowlike soap drifting over the gardens, bringing smiles to patients, families and staff surprised and delighted at the sight of these “flurries.” Even the therapy dogs wagged their tails as they explored this winter wonderland. Visit choa.org/snow to watch the heartwarming surprise snowfall.
Children’s expands radiology services in Cobb County In November, Children’s opened a pediatric radiology center at our Town Center location, offering state-of-the-art equipment and technology to the children of Cobb and surrounding counties. The 9,330-square-foot radiology facility offers medical technology including low dose computed tomography (CT) scans, digital X-ray, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and ultrasound. More than 20 radiologists representing all radiology subspecialties will be available to care for newborns to teenagers, whether a child needs an X-ray for a fracture or a MRI scan to diagnose a more serious condition. As the largest pediatric radiology program in the nation, Children’s pediatric radiologists interpret exams on children more than 240,000 times a year and pediatric sedation physicians have safely administered sedation in an outpatient setting since 2007. Pictured at left assisting in the ribbon cutting ceremony is Children’s Chief Executive Officer Donna Hyland. Visit choa.org/cobb to learn more about the services available in Cobb county.
12 wonders small
“There’s no greater mission than that of Children’s.”
Managing the mission Rex Adams joined Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta in June 2013 as Chief Operating Officer. Educated at both West Point and Harvard Business School, he brings with him more than 20 years of business leadership experience in an impressive variety of industries. Adams is excited to help continue the Children’s tradition of excellence in pediatric innovation.
How has your career led you to Children’s? My family and I lived in Atlanta from 1994 to 2007. I was previously
How is working at Children’s different from other organizations?
a senior executive at BellSouth, and after AT&T acquired BellSouth,
We are very mission driven, meaning we are service oriented, and
I was transferred to the Northeast to run the east region for AT&T.
we try to spend dollars in as prudent a manner as possible. Every
I had been interested in healthcare and had an opportunity to
company likes to think it is mission driven, but there’s no greater
be a COO of a Fortune 500 healthcare company in Tampa, Fla.
mission than that of Children’s. In fact, I remember finishing an
I then had a chance to serve as COO of a private-equity-owned
end-of-year budget meeting in December and like many end-of-
benefit management company that was striving to be at the
year budget meetings, I was a little worn out. After leaving the
forefront of home health management and post-hospital discharge
meeting and walking down the hallway at Egleston hospital, I saw
coordination of services.
all the children. Seeing our patients lined up to meet Santa Claus
I was contacted about the Children’s opportunity, and it was a great chance to return to Atlanta, which is a wonderful community.
put everything in perspective and reminded me of why we are all here working at Children’s.
I had been familiar with Children’s through BellSouth executives
I also think the quality and dedication of the employees here
who are on the Board, and I knew people whose children had
and their focus on the mission makes Children’s unique. We
been treated here, so I had a lot of respect for the organization
have employees who are highly skilled, motivated, incredibly
and the mission. I think it’s an exciting part of healthcare delivery,
giving, with strong service orientation. All of these attributes
as opposed to the payor side or the benefit management side. It
make it a pleasure to interact with them. No one questions why
was a great alignment of opportunities to serve an organization
we’re here. We just see the benefit of helping these children.
with an incredible mission and a tremendous history. The focus on healthcare delivery is so critical to saving the lives of children, in addition to helping America compete in the 21st century.
What is your role at Children’s? I’m responsible for the smooth operations of our three hospitals and 20 neighborhood locations, ensuring that our patients and their families have a high-quality experience. That includes managing the multiple service lines and resources that Children’s offers to make sure they’re meeting the patients’ expectations— and to make sure we’re financially viable. My role is to work with the entire team to ensure that we deliver the best care for every individual child who interacts with Children’s. In addition, my role is uniquely focused on making sure that we manage costs and deliver those services so that every dollar that we receive—whether from a donor or another source—is used with the child as the focus.
What do you think donors should know about Children’s? The first thing is that we put children first. The clinical outcome, their recovery and their maintenance of long-term health is the No. 1 priority and is everything we think about. Amid the evolution of healthcare, the funding sources to help all children are going to continue to be constrained, and in that environment, philanthropy becomes even more important. I think our desire to serve a broader set of children is really exciting. We will continue to distinguish ourselves through programs such as cardiac services, hematology/oncology and others that are saving lives daily. At the same time we are developing plans to help more children with less critical needs through our ambulatory locations. And I think the application of cutting-edge research at Marcus Autism Center is incredibly exciting. We all know a family who has been affected by some
Also, with the increasing complexity of healthcare and our
of those life challenges, and Children’s will continue to play an
healthcare delivery system and the stresses being placed
important role in trying to minimize and mitigate those challenges
on families in those situations, it is my job to ensure that
so that every child can live a long and fulfilling life.
coordination occurs across all of the resources that affect children and their families. I want to make sure that resources are well coordinated so that every child gets great care and every dollar is spent appropriately.
14 wonders small
Friends around town Hope and Will Ball In February, the 11th annual Hope and Will Ball was held at the St. Regis Atlanta, with over 700 guests attending this black-tie gala chaired by Liz Shults and Kay Douglass. The evening kicked off with an elegant welcome reception and a silent auction, followed by a dinner program, an exciting live auction and dancing. One of Children’s largest fundraisers for the hospitals, the Hope and Will Ball raised $825,000, almost $200,000 more than last year’s Ball. This year’s program honored longtime Children’s supporters Helen and Jimmy Carlos, pictured far right.
Holiday Mailbox Brigade This past holiday season, Friends groups helped spread festive cheer throughout the city by participating in the annual holiday Mailbox Brigade. Volunteers decorated mailboxes with locally-donated fresh greenery topped with red berries and adorned with festive, colorful bows. This year’s Brigade raised $133,000, more than doubling the $55,000 raised in its first year, 2010. Many thanks to the following Friends groups who held a brigade in their neighborhood to support Children’s: Brookhaven, Chastain, Decatur, Druid Hills, girlFriends, Hampton Farms/Riverhill, High Point, North Buckhead, Northside, Northwest Buckhead, Roswell, Sandy Springs, Smyrna, Walton County and Westside.
Taste of Dunwoody A sell-out event year after year, the annual Taste of Dunwoody took place in January at the Crowne Plaza Ravinia. Presented by TRC Staffing Services and co-chaired by Amanda Becker and Tracey Nies, pictured right, the event raised nearly $45,000 for Children’s. Taste of Dunwoody attendees enjoyed delicious fare from nearly 30 Atlanta-area restaurants, a silent auction and music by special guest Yacht Rock Revue.
Fin Fest Family Fin Fest, chaired by Landon Lanier and Britt Poer, had their most successful year yet, raising nearly $35,000 for the Marcus Autism Center. The event was held on Sunday, Feb. 23, at the Georgia Aquarium. Families enjoyed a private viewing of the aquarium as well a picnic dinner, live entertainment from Songs For Kids and activities provided by Sensations Therafun.
Hope Grows: Battle of the Bands Our high school volunteer group of fundraisers, girlFriends, hosted their second Hope Grows event in late February at the Buckhead Theatre. The leadership team, including Anne-Claire Pittman and Katherine Correll, pictured left, worked together to plan Battle of the Bands, featuring bands from Lovett, Westminster, Riverwood and Holy Innocents high schools. Attendees enjoyed a fun, casual evening of great food and music that raised more than $16,000 for Childrenâ€™s. Events like Hope Grows are a unique opportunity for our girlFriends to
Photo credit: Northside Neighbor/Samantha M. Shal
learn leadership skills while giving back to their community.
Cards for a Cause Supporters of Marcus Autism Center gathered Feb. 19 at Cherokee Town and Country Club for the third annual Cards for a Cause. The social bridge gathering included lunch, a silent auction and special door prizes. Ami Klin, Ph.D., Director at Marcus Autism Center, pictured left, was the speaker at the event. With the help of event chair Ann Cowan and table host committee chair Donna Davidson, the event hosted 168 avid bridge players and raised more than $17,000.
16 wonders small
Friends around town upcoming events
Big Splash The 2014 Big Splash will be the most memorable one yet. Merrill Lynch has graciously agreed to be our new presenting sponsor, and with their support we will feature a black-tie dinner and an intimate, private concert from an award-winning musical artist. Save the date for the Big Splash, which will take place Saturday, May 17, at the Georgia Aquarium. Visit choa.org/splash for additional details.
Derby Day The eighth annual Derby Day to benefit Children’s will take place from 4 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Saturday, May 3. This year’s event will be at The Country Club of the South in Johns Creek. This unique event is creatively structured around the Kentucky Derby, the annual thoroughbred horse race at Churchill Downs. The 140th Derby will be the focal point of the day, with a large screen showing of “the most exciting two minutes in sports.” In addition to fabulous hats, the event will feature authentic Derby-style food and beverages, a silent auction, horse voting and live entertainment. Visit choa.org/derby to find out more.
Cheers for Children The Friends Junior Committee (FJC) invites you to Cheers for Children ... A Cause to Celebrate. Guests at their signature young professional event, taking place Saturday, May 31, will enjoy complimentary cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, live music and a fabulous silent auction—all to benefit the patients at Children’s. Visit choa.org/cforc to learn more and purchase tickets.
Women of Style and Substance Fashion Show Join us at 11 a.m. May 12, for the Women of Style and Substance Spring Fashion Show presented by Saks Fifth Avenue and the St. Regis Atlanta. This year, join event chairs Ginny Brewer, Elizabeth Klump and Danielle Rollins, pictured left, and more than 500 event attendees to view Stella McCartneyâ€™s Fall 2014 collection and honor eight women of style and substance: Yum Arnold, Sally Dorsey, Marie Foster, Patrice Greek, Mary Johnson, Vicki Palmer, Anita Thomas and Dina Woodruff. Visit choa.org/wss to learn more and purchase tickets.
Mark your calendar Derby Day Saturday, May 3 choa.org/derby Highpoint Hike Saturday, May 3 choa.org/highpointhike Nine at Night Saturday, May 3 choa.org/nineatnight Swim Across America Sunday, May 4 choa.org/saa
Peachtree Battle Tour of Homes Tuesday, May 6 choa.org/tour Friends Spring Brunch Wednesday, May 7 choa.org/springbrunch Women of Style and Substance Fashion Show Monday, May 12 choa.org/wss
Big Splash Saturday, May 17 choa.org/splash Taste of the Highlands Saturday, May 17 choa.org/toh Cheers for Children Saturday, May 31 choa.org/cforc
Kaufmann Tire Spring Classic for Kids Tuesday, May 13 choa.org/springclassicforkids
Visit choa.org/events for information about these and all events supporting Childrenâ€™s.
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a brave patient at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. You can accomplish all of this and more by creating a donation page through Click for Kids. These websites help remind your friends and family that they can make a difference in the lives of thousands of children. Visit choa.org/clickforkids to learn more about creating your fundraising page today.