My first patient encounter was not in medical school. It was during college, when I was required to play violin for hospitalized children as part of a course called “Music as Medicine.” I would play Disney songs on the pediatric unit every week. Many of the children were extremely ill and had been there for weeks. Throughout their day, they are told what is wrong, given medicines, and berated with tests. My visits served as a distraction from their ailments. My music provided them with familiarity that extended beyond hospital walls.
I will never forget the joy that children displayed as I played “Happy Birthday” or holiday tunes during special occasions. Some of them were without family members and felt forgotten. I felt honored and blessed that I could improve the quality of life for so many children who would otherwise have had yet another day of wishing and waiting.
While my occupation now is devoted to cure and palliation, I still advocate strongly for treating the human spirit. I urge you to take a look at a wonderful charity called “The Holiday Heroes Foundation” founded by two Chicagoan sisters who experienced long-term hospitalizations for cystic fibrosis. The charity recruits volunteers (some of them celebrities) to help hospitalized children celebrate otherwise forgotten birthdays or holidays with visits, activities, and gifts.
The foundation is hosting a fundraiser on June 29th that will feature celebrities, food, drinks, dancing, and several auctions! The Holiday Heroes Foundation wants you to come out and support their great mission to bring holiday celebrations and birthday parties to long-term hospitalized children and their families. Join more than 250 of Chicago’s most “networked” business leaders, generous sponsors, and sports celebrities– such asDesmond Clark, Fergie Jenkins, Revie Sorey and more– in support of the Holiday Heroes Foundation.
If you want to learn more or plan on attending- click here
Tags: activities, and gifts, celebrity, celine thum, charity, chicago, children, Cure, disney, happy birthday, Holiday hereos, hospital, Maimonides Medical Center, medicine, Music, palliation, quay, sick, sisters, two, visits, volunteers
If you follow me on twitter & facebook you know I attended a beautiful black tie wedding on the roof of an amazing hotel this weekend. What I didn’t share was that it was an event full of orthopedic surgeons from Chicago Rush hospital who taught me much about that area of medical that I can’t get out of my mind, and have to share.
I guess I should first say that it was very cool to hear that their area of practice in orthopedics are in the top ten in the world at chicago rush and I congratulate (and thank) them for that. I also thought it was fascinating to hear stories of how these doctors use that highest level of expertise & passion to travel to the poorest areas of the world and offer their services for free to many people in serious need. They don’t need to do that, so I seriously give them props for that kind of heart & drive.
I also found out that they were all excited to attend a very worthy charity event at one of my venues that I feel horrible for having to miss as I will be supporting a friend at the Toronto film fest, so wanted to shout it out here in effort to contribute to its much needed success by hopefully turning you on to it too!
The event aims to help the 294,000 children under the age of 18 affected by pediatric arthritis and rheumatologic conditions that suffer from painful swelling, stiffness, & uneven bone growth, which causes limping and inability to walk. Btw, did you know arthritis in general causes 9,000 deaths, 750,000 hospitalizations & 8,000,000 cases of problems, not to mention the over $80 billion in care & lost wages? Crazy. (check out www.hip2knees.com)
You can help by coming to the associate board of the arthritis foundation’s “annual summer shindig” this Friday September 10, 2010 from 6-9pm @ Chicago’s Rockit Bar & Grill at 22 w hubbard! cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, amazing people, great silent auction items,… and most important, all proceeds go to benefit kids suffering from Juvenile Arthritis.
Please spread the word and get a couple tickets for this great event at http://afchicago.kintera.org/SummerShindig