Driscoll's volunteers motivated by more than just care, generosity
April 18, 2012
Celebration honoring them to be held at the hospital May 24
Dick Hinman, a Driscoll volunteer since 1994, does a magic trick with rubber bands for patient Isaiah Wicke.
CORPUS CHRISTI - For several hours a week, Valerie Caldwell's smiling face is the first thing visitors see at Driscoll Children's Hospital's Welcome Center. Caldwell became a volunteer at Driscoll a year and a half ago after being urged by some friends who are also volunteers.
"You get to see a lot of people coming in and see what's going on in the hospital," Caldwell said of the Welcome Center. "Working here gives me insight into the heart of Driscoll Children's Hospital. And it's a big, compassionate heart. There is a family-oriented feeling here," she went on to say before she stopped to help a visitor sign in.
Caldwell is one of 340 volunteer members of the Auxiliary to Driscoll Children's Hospital who are being recognized for their efforts during National Volunteer Week, April 15-21. On May 24, Driscoll will host a celebration for them with cake and door prizes in the hospital's auditorium. The party's theme will be "A world of diversity...one purpose."
"The Auxiliary's contributions to the hospital are priceless," said Lizette Saenz, director of Volunteer Services at Driscoll. "We could not do what we do without their thoughtfulness and commitment. I believe the volunteers enrich not only the lives of our patients and families, but their own lives as well."
Volunteer Joe Lugo, a Navy veteran, shows Driscoll patient Enrique Llanas, Jr. how to mix colors to paint his papier-maché mask.
Driscoll volunteer Valerie Caldwell helps a visitor check in at the hospital's Welcome Center.
Saenz's belief rings true with volunteers like Joe Lugo. He can be found helping out in the hospital's fifth floor classroom, where long-term patients keep pace with their school curriculum. While helping some children mix colors to paint the papier-maché masks they were making, Lugo explained that he first began volunteering in the communities he lived in while he was in the Navy.
"Some of the kids I've encountered in the past didn't have a father figure," said Lugo, who retired after serving 20 years in the Navy. "I encourage these children, praise them and they appreciate it. What I've learned over the past year at Driscoll is that these children are more of a blessing to us than we are to them."
Volunteer Dick Hinman, 81, has roamed Driscoll Children's Hospital since 1994, entertaining patients with antics and magic tricks. He never leaves a child without a smile.
"This is like recess for me," Hinman said with a kind, grandfatherly voice. "I'm a big kid." A toy mouse peeking from the pocket of his blue smock is Stuart Little's big brother, he pointed out. Then, with seriousness, Hinman echoed the sentiment of other Driscoll volunteers.
"Some of these kids are very sick. Some are having surgery. If you can make their day better it makes yours better too. I enjoy it, the kids enjoy it. It's nothing complicated."
By the numbers:
- Number of volunteers at Driscoll Children's Hospital: 300
- Number of volunteers at Driscoll's McAllen and Brownsville clinics: 40
- Age range of adult volunteers: 18 - 90
- Number of Driscoll's summer 2012 Volunteens: 85
- What: Driscoll Children's Hospital Volunteer Celebration
- When: 11:30 a.m. Thursday, May 24
- Where: Driscoll Children's Hospital auditorium, 3533 S. Alameda St.
Community supports children through donations to Driscoll Children's Medical Plaza - McAllen
April 02, 2012
McALLEN - The Auxiliary to Driscoll Children's Medical Plaza - McAllen recently received generous donations from local businesses and a school that will benefit the young patients of the Rio Grande Valley.
Ellen Carruthers, Driscoll Auxiliary chair (left) receives plush toys from Tina Coddington, Central Christian School computer and music director.
EZ PAWN and their charitable foundation, EZ Corp., donated a check for $2,598 to the Auxiliary. The funds were used to decorate the Medical Plaza's new Nuclear Radiology Clinic with wall art and a waiting area with a TV and large playscape.
The staff at Barnes & Noble Booksellers at Palms Crossing donated more than 1,700 reading and activity books to the Auxiliary that will be given to patients as birthday and holiday gifts. The books will also be available in the Medical Plaza's waiting areas for children to enjoy while they're waiting to see a physician.
Also, more than 350 plush toys were donated by the students, administration and staff members of Central Christian School. The toys will be given as gifts to patients at the Medical Plaza throughout the Easter holiday.
The Auxiliary to Driscoll Children's Medical Plaza - McAllen relies on contributions from the community to help make medical treatment a positive experience for South Texas children. To donate or inquire about volunteer opportunities, contact the Volunteer Services Department at (361) 694-5011 or 1-800-DCH-LOVE or go to www.driscollchildrens.org and click on "Volunteer."
Pictured, left to right, are Gloria Martinez, Driscoll Auxiliary member, Pasqual Rodriguez, Mario Ortiz, Israel Cerda, Vidal Hernandez and Miguel Duran, all with EZ PAWN, and Aida Escobar, Driscoll Auxiliary vice chair.
Norma Martinez, assistant store manager at Barnes & Noble Booksellers (left), delivers books to Ellen Carruthers, Driscoll Auxiliary chair, and George Carruthers, Driscoll Auxiliary member.
Driscoll Children's Hospital, Whataburger join for GALA to help Rio Grande Valley children
March 08, 2012
RIO GRANDE VALLEY - On a daily basis, physicians and staff from Driscoll Children's Hospital in Corpus Christi travel to Driscoll's specialty clinics in McAllen, Brownsville and Harlingen to treat patients who may have cancer, need a kidney transplant or are suffering from any number of diseases. A significant number of Driscoll's patients live in the Rio Grande Valley.
Whataburger donated $40,000 toward Driscoll Children's GALA during a press conference March 8 at Driscoll Children's Quick Care - McAllen. Pictured, left to right, are: Earl Massie with Re/Max 1st Choice, Chuck and Rhonda Sellman, GALA co-chairs, Paul McDaniel, GALA co-chair, Dr. Riaz Shareef, medical director of Driscoll Children's Quick Care - McAllen, Hugh Dobson, member of Whataburger's founding family, David Cantu, Whataburger director of operations and Aaron Valdez, Whataburger area supervisor.
To benefit the Rio Grande Valley clinics, Driscoll has joined with Whataburger for the Driscoll Children's GALA, a fundraiser to be held April 20 at the Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show Event Center in Mercedes. Formerly known as Fiesta de los Niños, the GALA promises a good time for all, including cocktails, a barbecue dinner, silent and live auctions and dancing to the music of Scott Randolph & The White Lightning Band.
"We are excited to begin this fundraising event in the mid-Valley area," said Reagan Florence, Driscoll director of Development in the Rio Grande Valley. "Driscoll Children's Hospital has been helping children in South Texas for nearly 60 years. We hope the community comes out to support the Valley's youth who need the special
medical care that Driscoll provides."
On March 8, Whataburger presented Driscoll Children's Hospital with a check for $40,000 as the title sponsor of this year's GALA. Whataburger has been the title sponsor of the Valley event since its inception in 2004.
"Whataburger is proud to have partnered with Driscoll Children's Hospital for more than 20 years and watched its services expand into the Rio Grande Valley," said Whataburger Director of Operations David Cantu. "We feel honored to support Driscoll once again through this year's GALA and celebrate the wonderful work done here by the doctors, nurses and staff who provide specialty healthcare for children in South Texas."
Laura Cortez, executive director of Driscoll's Rio Grande Valley clinics, said Driscoll is extremely grateful for Whataburger's sponsorship.
"Whataburger's support, along with the donations of others, will stay in the Valley and enable our children to receive the quality care they deserve right here."
- What: Driscoll Children's GALA
- When: 6:30 p.m. Friday, April 20
- Where: Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show Event Center, 1000 N. Texas Ave., Mercedes
- Information/donations: Reagan Florence, (956) 688-1239 or email@example.com
Driscoll Children's Hospital, Whataburger to hold press conference, announce details of upcoming GALA
March 05, 2012
Driscoll Children's Hospital, Whataburger to hold press conference, announce details of upcoming GALA
WHAT: Whataburger officials will present a check for $40,000 to Driscoll Children's Hospital at a press conference and announce details about the upcoming Driscoll Children's Hospital GALA in the Rio Grande Valley. The GALA, formerly known as Fiesta de los Niños, will benefit Driscoll's specialty clinics in the Valley.
WHEN: 10:30 a.m. Thursday, March 8
WHERE: Driscoll Children's Quick Care, 1120 E. Ridge Road, McAllen
Driscoll Children's Hospital's 20th annual Fiesta de los Niños nets record proceeds
February 08, 2012
CORPUS CHRISTI - Driscoll Children's Hospital's 20th annual Fiesta de los Niños on Feb. 3 surpassed organizers' expectations and netted $620,000, all of which will go toward the renovation and expansion of the hospital's Emergency Department. The fundraiser, held at the American Bank Center, featured live, silent and bid-board auctions, a barbecue dinner and entertainment by country music artist Tracy Lawrence.
Janie Hoskins (left) and Suzanne Almond were co-chairs for the 20th annual Fiesta de los Niños.
"We were thrilled with the outpouring of community support during the evening," said Martha St. Romain, vice president of Development at Driscoll Children's Hospital. "Every year we are absolutely astounded at the generosity and philanthropic spirit that we witness at this event - all for the health of our South Texas children. We are certainly thankful for our giving community here in the Coastal Bend and throughout the region."
Led by long-time title sponsor Flint Hills Resources, Fiesta netted $575,000 in 2011. Those funds also are earmarked for the Emergency Department project. The proposed expansion will include two trauma rooms, 20 private exam rooms, six private, fast-track rooms, two triage areas with ideal visibility to the waiting room, an expanded central nursing station and a new ambulance vestibule and weather protection canopy.
In 1987, Driscoll became the first hospital in South Texas to offer emergency services specifically for pediatrics, and the Emergency Department currently serves almost 40,000 children each year.
Keep Your Kids Safe Program at Driscoll Children's Hospital gets boost from Kohl's Department Stores
January 12, 2012
Company donates $53,062 to Driscoll's Injury Prevention Program
CORPUS CHRISTI - Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for children 3-14 years old. The National Highway Safety Administration estimates that roughly three out of four child safety seats are not used correctly. Many parents are unaware that their child's car seat is not properly installed or realize their child is not fitted correctly into their car-seat.
Through a partnership with Kohl's Department Stores, Driscoll Children's Hospital's Injury Prevention Program will inspect car seats on Friday, Jan. 13, 2012. A check totaling $53,062 will be presented by Kohl's at 10:15 a.m. followed by car seat checks starting at 10:30 a.m.
This year's grant will help support child safety initiatives and outreach programs in the areas of child passenger safety and helmet safety. The donations were collected from Kohl's stores. Since 2004, Kohl's has gifted Driscoll Children's Hospital $293,499 to promote child safety efforts.
"Kohl's has been a great supporter of our child safety initiatives. We are fortunate to have such a great partner," said Maricruz Cantu, injury prevention coordinator at Driscoll Children's Hospital. "Along with the donations which allow us to continue injury prevention programs, the Kohl's associates volunteer their time and make our community outreach events a success."
What: Check presentation and children's car seat checks
When: Friday, Jan. 13, 2012
Time: Check presentation at 10:15 a.m.; car seat checks from 10:30 a.m. - noon
Where: Driscoll Children's Hospital's Injury Prevention Program, 3533 S. Alameda St. (yellow portable building behind the Health Center)
Driscoll Children's Hospital's annual Fiesta de los Niños celebrates 20 years of making miracles happen for South Texas children
January 05, 2012
CORPUS CHRISTI - Fiesta de los Niños, which began as a small, grassroots effort two decades ago, has evolved into a high-profile event that many South Texans return to year after year. On Feb. 3, Driscoll Children's Hospital's 20th annual Fiesta de los Niños will be held at the American Bank Center Exhibit Hall. It will include its signature combination of fun, food and music, and its mission remains the same as it did 20 years ago - to enable Driscoll to offer more and enhanced services to children in the community.
On Jan. 5, Flint Hills Resources donated a check for $50,000 toward Driscoll Children's Hospital's 20th annual Fiesta de los Niños. Pictured, left to right, are: Manette Scanio, president of Driscoll's Development Foundation; Edgar L. Cortes, MD, medical director of Driscoll's Emergency Department; Donna Quinn, Driscoll vice president of Operations & Quality; Rich Tuttle, director of External Affairs for Flint Hills Resources; and Phil Gaarder, vice president and refining manager, Flint Hills Resources-Corpus Christi Complex.
"Because of the support from community partners such as Flint Hills Resources, Driscoll Children's Hospital is able to continue to enhance its services and carry on the vision to be the regional leader in children's services through innovation and excellence in healthcare, advocacy, education and research," said Martha St. Romain, vice president of Development at Driscoll Children's Hospital.
Led by long-time title-sponsor Flint Hills Resources, Fiesta de los Niños is a major annual fundraiser for Driscoll Children's Hospital. Each year, 100 percent of the funds raised from the event directly benefit the hospital. For the past 19 years, through community support of Fiesta, Driscoll has been able to develop and improve its services and programs in order to better serve the children of South Texas. In 2011, with more than 1,200 people in attendance, Fiesta raised $575,000 for the renovation and expansion of the Emergency Department (ED).
Proceeds from this year's event will again go toward the ED project in order to enhance overall patient care and provide a state-of-the-art department. The proposed expansion will include two trauma rooms, 20 private exam rooms, six private, fast-track rooms, two triage areas with ideal visibility to the waiting room, an expanded central nursing station and a new ambulance vestibule and weather protection canopy. In 1987, Driscoll became the first hospital in South Texas to offer emergency services specifically for pediatrics, and the ED currently serves almost 40,000 children each year.
Guests at Fiesta de los Niños will enjoy silent, live and bid-board auctions, a barbecue dinner and entertainment by country music artist Tracy Lawrence. The program begins at 6:30 p.m. with cocktails, silent and bid-board auctions and live music by Still Crazy.
For more information or table sponsorship, call Driscoll's Development Department at (361) 694-6405 or visit www.driscollchildrens.org/giving.
- What: Driscoll Children's Hospital's 20th annual Fiesta de los Niños
- When: 6:30 - 11:30 p.m., Friday, Feb. 3
- Where: American Bank Center Exhibit Hall
- Information: (361) 694-6405
6:30 p.m. - Doors open, reception, silent & bid-board auctions open, dancing to Still Crazy
7:00 p.m. - Western barbecue dinner served
8:30 p.m. - Live auction begins, silent auction closes (Bid-board remains open until 10 p.m.)
9:30 p.m. - Featured entertainer, Tracy Lawrence
Press conference to include check presentation, details on Driscoll's 20th annual Fiesta de los Niños
January 04, 2012
WHAT: A press conference will be held at which officials from Flint Hills Resources will present a check for $50,000 to Driscoll Children's Hospital for the renovation and expansion of the hospital's Emergency Department, and details will be announced about the 20th annual Fiesta de los Niños, to be held Feb. 3 at the American Bank Center. Proceeds from Fiesta de los Niños will also go toward the Emergency Department project.
WHEN: 2 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 5
WHERE: Driscoll Children's Hospital, 4th Floor Playroom, 3533 S. Alameda St.
Driscoll collects more than four tons of food during food drive
December 05, 2011
This year, Driscoll Children's Hospital's employees came together in a big way to collect nearly 4.4 tons of food for donation to KIII-TV. On Dec. 1, numerous departments delivered packages of food and beverages they collected to a U-Haul truck outside the hospital. With the coordination of the Patient Relations Department and the Fun Bunch Committee, all items were weighed and recorded. Then, employees rolled up their sleeves and loaded the truck. The food was delivered to KIII the next day.
Employees from many departments helped load a U-Haul truck for Driscoll's annual food drive.
Patient Relations recorded which departments collected the most food according their size:
- Small department: Driscoll Children's Urgent Care - Corpus Christi, 263.80 lbs.
- Medium department: 6th Tower, 440.22 lbs.
- Large department: Information Systems, 958.10 lbs.
To make the food collection a little fun, a contest was held for which department created the most original food containers. The winners were:
- First place: Transport Team, for a mini-Driscoll ambulance.
- Second place: Environmental Services, for elaborately decorated Smurf-themed boxes.
- Third place: 4th Tower, for a snowman-decorated barrel.
"All of the participants showed their dedication to making Driscoll the very best it can be," said Evelyn Ferrer, director of Patient Relations. "Congratulations to all the winners, and thanks again to everyone for SHARING YOUR CHRISTMAS!"
New members of Driscoll's Clowns Who Care to be introduced
November 15, 2011
WHAT: For almost 15 years, the Clowns Who Care have been part of the Auxiliary to Driscoll Children's Hospital, clowning around and bringing smiles to patients, parents and staff. Tomorrow, the group will introduce seven new clowns to the community. The Clowns Who Care, including Corpus Christi City councilwomen Chris Adler and Nelda Martinez and more than 30 other women, visit Driscoll Children's Hospital twice a week. Their tireless and compassionate efforts for the children of South Texas are well-known; they have logged more than 14,000 volunteer hours between them.
New members are:
- Kyle Cromwell, supporting partner of three oilfield businesses - Cry Baby
- Kelly Koch Gilmore, attorney - Awesome Blossum
- Debbi Kelley, stay-at-home mom & substitute teacher - Cha Cha Loca
- Janice Roberts, banker - Oopsy Daisy
- Cindy Segrest, small-jewelry business-owner - Cowgirl Pearl
- Jennifer Susser, gemologist - Strawberry Shorty Cake
- Stephanie Waterman, Farmers Insurance agent - Mz Glitzy
WHEN: 11 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 16
WHERE: KIII-TV, 5002 S. Padre Island Dr.