LOMA LINDA, CA., August 18, 2016 – Community businesses and organizations came out to Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital (LLUCH) to treat patients to an afternoon full of fun, games, crafts and books for the annual Fall Community Day Tuesday, Aug. 16.
The fun community fair-type event allowed local businesses and organizations to see the hospital first-hand and brighten the day of kids in the hospital. Various booths provided an activity, game or craft for the patients and their families to enjoy.
One such patient was Ximena Sanchez, 5, from Lancaster. She was all smiles as she made the acquaintance of one webby superhero and a couple of fairy tale princesses.
“The Community Day event is a unique opportunity to bring local businesses and organizations together in support of our patients and their families,” said Joanna DeLeon, director, LLUCH Foundation. “Not only does it put a smile on the face of a child, it also brings an important diversion in their otherwise challenging day.”
DeLeon added that the success of these events relies on community involvement, highlighting that outside groups truly do care.
Businesses and organizations that came out for the kids were:
- Fiesta Village
- Arrowhead Credit Union’s ArrowHeart Foundation
- 501st Legion Star Wars
- Golden Heart Books
- Ayres Hotels
- Ashley Furniture
- Auto Club Speedway featuring Lefty the Mascot
- Toys r Us
- Medals of Courage
- Mikey Garcia, professional boxer
Also in attendance was Angelina Castleberry, a patient mom who founded Made for a Miracle, a non-profit organization out of Indio that provides support and assistance to families who have critically ill newborns or children, either in the NICU or PICU, and special needs families.
Castleberry has 2-year-old twins who were born at LLUCH, one of whom visits the hospital four times a week for dialysis treatment as he awaits a kidney transplant. Castleberry and her Made for a Miracle team gave out a variety of coloring books, stickers and goodie bags to patients and their younger siblings during the event.
“I love being able to give back to the hospital that has been so great to my family and me,” Castleberry said. “This is like a second home to me, and I want these kids to have a positive experience too.”