Summer 2019 Newsletter

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enCourage Kids’ Newsletter SUMMER 2019 EDITION


enCourage Kids Foundation helps humanize healthcare for children and their families by resourcing impact-driven pediatric programs and supporting the Child Life Community.


enCourage Kids Foundation envisions a world where every child—regardless of the difficulty of his or her medical journey— experiences joy, hope, resilience, and healing.


Your kindness and generosity ensure continued support of pediatric facilities and the Child Life Community, providing tools and resources that improve the emotional and physical well-being of millions of hospitalized children across the country.

Because of you, enCourage Kids is able to continue to help humanize healthcare for children and their families.

Pediatric patients and their families rely on Child Life Specialists to navigate scary diagnoses and to help make their hospital experience as comfortable and positive as possible. We are proud that Child Life can count on enCourage Kids for funding and the impact-driven programs that enable their work. We couldn’t have this effect on children’s lives without you. Because of you, pediatric patients experience less fear, isolation, and anxiety. Because of you, art and music therapy helps hospitalized children express themselves through the most difficult and vulnerable time of their lives. Because of you, visits from clowns, magicians, and musicians provide toddlers and teens with much-needed distraction from pain and discomfort. Because of you, patients and families can learn to cope with treatment, procedures, and tests. Because of you, sick kids can experience joy, hope, resilience, and healing. With your help, enCourage Kids continues to humanize healthcare for children and their families. Your support has a direct impact on the Child Life Community and makes a difference in the lives of their youngest patients. I look forward to discovering all we can accomplish together over the coming months. Thank you for all you do to make the hospital a better place to get better for children and their families. With gratitude,

Michele Hall-Duncan President and CEO


Child Life Specialist,

It is tough. But it is incredibly rewarding too. In such a short period of time, you build a special bond with each kid.

We recently sat down with Tracey Kunj-Ramen, the only Ch one-person Child Life program and how a typical day can loo

She begins her day by prepping for the interdisciplinary tea managers, and Tracey review each pediatric patient in the health aspects. Tracey explained that knowing which patien resources she may want to use. From there, Tracey is runnin departments for supplies or to prepare an anxious child for

Tracey’s services extend to the Pediatric Department, Ped Unit. When she is not interacting with patients, she is work rooms, new televisions, and more. Like many Child Life Dep such as equipment, supplies, technology, and general upke

enCourage Kids is proud to have provided funding for the p Room Renovation, and other enhancements for their Child L the pediatric unit.

We are delighted to support one-person Child Life program

(From left to right) Gilda M. (RN/ Case Manager), Vicky J. (RN, Nu Child Life Specialist), and Regina S. (RN, Nurse).

, Tracey Kunj-Ramen

hild Life Specialist at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center in Queens, New York. She shared what it’s like to run a ok like.

am meeting that is held each morning in the pediatric department. Together, doctors, residents, nurses, case e unit and discuss the best course of action for their treatment. This includes the medical, social, and mental nts will need blood work or have specific procedures done helps with planning her day, as well as what tools and ng all over the hospital. “I will see my patients in the Pediatric Unit first, and then I could be called down to other r a procedure. It really depends on who comes in that day and what is needed.”

diatric ER, which treats 25,000 patients annually, the Ambulatory Care Unit, and the Neonatal Intensive Care king with various hospital staff to handle administrative tasks, including acquiring new paint for her patient’s partments, Tracey often faces challenges securing funding for things needed on her floor and for her patients, eep. This is where enCourage Kids steps in.

past 17 years to Jamaica Hospital for child-friendly exam tables, new infant scales, a total Pediatric Emergency Life Department. We also send entertainers for their monthly hospital parties and provide supplies to brighten

ms and the entire Child Life Community at large.

urse), Tracey Kunj-Ramen (Certified

Patients at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center enjoy a party funded by enCourage Kids Foundation and planned by Tracey.

VECTA Machine at Flushing Hospital Medical Center


This interactive machine provides hospitalized children and their families with choices, distraction, and a sense of control.

The hospital can be filled with scary unknowns for children, including sounds, smells, feelings, and faces. However, at Flushing Hospital Medical Center there is one face that the children grow to recognize: Rashmi Momaya. Rashmi is the only Child Life Specialist at Flushing Hospital Medical Center and has dedicated her work to helping alleviate the stress that accompanies a hospital visit. In 2008, enCourage Kids Foundation funded the hospital’s first Child Life Program and we have been an important partner in their work ever since. Recently, we funded a VECTA Deluxe Mobile Sensory Station. The VECTA machine is a transportable station that has a CD player, a projector, fiber optic cables for tactile touch, aromatherapy, and an interactive bubble column in which the speed of the bubbles and the color of the column can be controlled by the patient. The VECTA machine creates a way for Rashmi to use nonpharmaceutical methods that help her patients cope with their anxiety and fear during painful procedures, such as blood draws, IV placements, drain removals, dressing changes, and lumbar punctures. This interactive machine provides hospitalized children and their families with choices, distraction, and a sense of control. Since Flushing Hospital only has a one-person Child Life program, the VECTA machine is an instrumental tool, allowing Rashmi to constantly move between the Pediatric Floor and Pediatric Emergency Room to help even more children experience a comfortable and more positive hospital visit.

1560 Broadway, Suite 600 New York, NY 10036

3 MILLION CHILDREN are hospitalized every year in the United States. That is 342 CHILDREN EVERY HOUR. enCourage Kids is on a mission to reach EVERY SINGLE ONE. YOU are making hospitals a better place to get better.

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