Together for the Holidays

Many times each day, I find myself riding the hospital elevators with our patients and their families. When I ask, “Which button can I push for you?” the answer often is the same: “Is there a button that says ‘home’?”

The holiday season is one of the most difficult times of year for our patients and families, especially when everyone wants to be together for the holidays. Parents do their best to unite their families, but it’s a challenge – one child is in the hospital, other children need care at home, job duties remain and there are countless pressures of the holiday season. We believe families should be together during this difficult time. This is why we are partnering with 96.5 WKLH to help bring patients and their families “Together for the Holidays.”

Our online fundraising campaign runs through Thursday, Dec. 23. One highlight of the campaign is a live broadcast with Dave Luczak and Carole Caine of WKLH in our hospital lobby from 5 a.m. to 10 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 16. Throughout the campaign, we will accept cash donations at chw.org/together. These gifts will provide various amenities to help unite our patients and families during the holidays, including gas cards, restaurant certificates, hotel accommodations and transportation.

We can’t add a “home” button to our elevators, but we can make the holiday season brighter for kids and their families with your support. Help keep these families together for the holidays. For more information or to donate, visit us at www.chw.org/together.

Maggie Butterfield, director of Patient Amenities and Family Services, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

RE Ho! Ho! Ho! for the kids

As a performer in the band REO Speedwagon, I spend much of my time on the road. I know what it feels like to be away from family. As a husband and father, I treasure the time I spend at home, especially during the holidays.

Unfortunately, many children are hospitalized during the holiday season, and they’re separated from their parents, brothers and sisters. Illness, geography and financial pressures can make it really hard for families to unite and celebrate this special time of year. Their situation can seem hopeless.

But it’s not. We all can help. That’s why we are donating a portion of the proceeds from our upcoming concert at the Pabst Theater on Saturday, Dec. 18, “RE Ho! Ho! Ho!,” to Together for the Holidays.

Together for the Holidays is a fundraising campaign presented by the hospital and our good friends at 96.5 WKLH. Donations to Together for the Holidays will provide gas cards, restaurant and grocery gift cards, hotel vouchers and transportation assistance to patient families.

Join us for the concert this Saturday, Dec. 18, have a great time and help kids and families in southeast Wisconsin.

~ Kevin Cronin, lead vocals, rhythm guitar, REO Speedwagon

For more information, visit Together for the Holidays. To purchase tickets for the R.E. Ho Ho Ho concert, visit the Pabst Theater. And for more news on REO Speedwagon, please visit www.reospeedwagon.com.

Let’s work TOGETHER as one!

This year was the 33rd Annual Briggs & Al’s Run and Walk for Children’s Hospital. It happened in the streets of downtown Milwaukee on October 9th. On that day 15,800 people came together as one to work for one common goal, the children currently being cared for at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin.

Dave and I were again fortunate to be a part of the event. It really is one the coolest things I have ever seen. It is hard to describe to those who have never witnessed it; thousands of people running and walking to help families, many strangers that they have never met. It is an awe inspiring moment as you see person after person cross the starting line, all joined together to help their community.

There are families of children who are currently in the hospital, families of children who have been treated at the hospital and families of children who, sadly, are not with us anymore. It’s a bittersweet moment, but, you know that you’ve helped…even if just a little bit.

I can never begin to understand what the families of those children go through. A life turned upside down by illness. A life disrupted by an unforgiving and unwelcome guest; a club that you never wanted to be a member of. How do you cope? How do you keep a sense of normalcy in what is a very abnormal situation?

I know that the staff at Children’s does everything it can do to try and help the family in crisis maintain a sense of togetherness, even though many times the family can’t be together. So, here we are at the Holiday Season. It’s the time of year when we want to be with family. It’s the time of year that all of the past years problems should be set aside and we should be thankful for what we have. How is that possible with a sick child? How can a family lean on each other for support if they are not together? We know that support is needed year round, but it is really highlighted at the holidays. Imagine standing in a hospital elevator and the only option you have is the floor where your child is being treated. There is no “home” button to press.

That’s why this year 96.5 WKLH and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin would like you to help bring families Together for the Holidays. It’s a new program that will give you the opportunity to help these families in crisis. Check it out at chw.org/together to find out all the details to help. A donation of just $25 can help a family. The money will be used to provide transportation assistance, hotel stays and meals for the patient families. It is a wonderful way to make a real difference for the holiday season. If all of the 15,000+ people who came together in October donated, imagine the impact it would make and the help it would provide.

Let’s work together as one again, as a community again. Let’s help everyone be Together for the Holidays. When you are with your family this season give thanks for all that you have and be proud to say that you’ve helped someone else. It’s what the holidays are all about.

~ Carole Caine, 96.5 WKLH

Dave and Carole host the Miracle Marathon each year on WKLH. Read more about Together for the Holidays and Miracle Marathon.

KLH and CHW Together for the Holidays

It’s a cliché that has its roots in the Bible. “Out of the mouths of babes,” we say (slightly misquoting). But it’s more than just “kids say the darndest things.” The cliché essentially means that somehow children, in their simplicity, display far more wisdom than their elders. Carole Caine and I experience it every single year when we host the WKLH ‘Miracle Marathon’ benefiting Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. And even though we consistently marvel at the strength and courage these little ones’ display, it still catches us off guard when, courtesy of a child, we realize that we need to reprioritize.

Let me give you an example; we called Children’s Hospital to ask what the Morning ‘KLH could do to help make it special for all those kids stuck in a hospital bed during the holidays. Honestly, we were thinking of toys, or video games, or visits with celebrities, or a thousand other things that don’t seem so important now. We were told that during the holiday season, all the kids want, all they ask for is for their family to be together.

That’s easier said than done. Imagine what it’s like to try and keep your family unified when you’re dealing with a sick child? There are expenses that no one in the world could possibly budget for. All those days of driving to and from the hospital, the gasoline, the meals which need to be eaten out, not to mention child care concerns for siblings and trying to meet the emotional needs of the rest of the family. And what if the Ronald McDonald House is full? Who pays for the hotel room if Mom or Dad needs to stay near the hospital?

Let’s get back to those very young, very wise patients. They are fully aware of all the daily struggles of Mom, Dad, brothers, sisters, Grandmas, Grandpas, and more. They know how draining it is for the rest of their family to try to live their own lives yet tend to them. In some cases they may be too young to verbalize that concern, but they can ‘feel’ it. We are offering you a chance to make a difference. We are proud to announce, 96.5 WKLH & Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin’s Together for the Holidays.

Your cash donation to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin will provide amenities for patient families including gas cards, restaurant gift certificates, transportation vouchers and overnight accommodations. The campaign runs through Thursday, December 23th. And listen to 96.5 WKLH Thursday, December 16th, as we broadcast the Dave & Carole show live from the hospital from 5-10 a.m.

Visit chw.org/together to help the kids and their families and have a great holiday!

My experience as a Children’s Hospital and Health System volunteer

I’ve always wanted to use my skills to make a difference in the lives of children. But as a marketing and journalism student, I didn’t know how to apply my skills in a meaningful way. Luckily, while searching for summer internships, I found an opportunity to volunteer at Children’s Hospital and Health System Foundation.

At the foundation, I helped write and produce programs, reports, brochures, newsletters and other communication for donors and supporters. All of my work …Continue reading this post

Listen to La Gran D 104.7 FM this week and support Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

(Lea este poste en Español aquí.)

I am so proud to be a member of the Hispanic community in Milwaukee. Over the last two years, we have come together to truly make a difference in our children’s lives through the La Gran D 104.7 Hispanic Radiothon. The event benefits Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin – and in such a short timeframe, we have given more than $90,000 to the hospital.

We at La Gran D are ready to do it again – and this year, we want to do it bigger and better than ever, but we need your help. Please join us this week, Thursday, July 15, through Saturday, July 17, for the third annual La Gran D 104.7 FM Hispanic Radiothon. This radiothon is for all of the little ones that need our help. I’m ready to help, are you? …Click here to continue reading

Escuche La Gran D 104.7 FM esta semana y apoye a Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

(Read this post in English here.)

Estoy tan orgulloso de ser un miembro de la comunidad hispana de Milwaukee. En los últimos dos años nos hemos unido a través del Radiotón Hispano de La Gran D 104.7 para realmente marcar una diferencia en la vida de nuestros niños.  Este evento es a beneficio de Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin – y en tan corto lapso de tiempo hemos dado más de  $90,000 al hospital.

Aquí en La Gran D estamos listos para hacerlo otra vez – y este año, queremos hacerlo mayor y mejor que nunca, pero necesitamos su ayuda. Por favor únase a nosotros esta semana, del jueves 15 al sábado 17 de Julio en el tercer Radiotón Hispano anual de La Gran D 104.7 FM.  Este radiotón es para todos aquellos pequeñines que necesitan nuestra ayuda. Estoy listo para ayudar ¿lo estás tú? …Click here to continue reading

Remembering Mike

mike-h-caine-blogThere’s a saying that out of the mouths of babes comes wisdom. It is something I learn every year. The Miracle Marathon not only is a time when we as adults should take the time to help a very important facility. It also is the time that we should take to listen to what the youth of today is telling us. Sometimes we can learn very important life lessons from the young.

I know that as adults, we feel we are the ones who should lead. But as adults, we also should be able to recognize brilliance in people of any age. I have learned many things from the young people we have interviewed during the Miracle Marathon. The children who are battling for their lives very often have important lessons for us all.

…Click here to continue reading

The magic and hope of Children’s Hospital

“You’re lucky you got him here when you did. If you had waited any longer, he could have died.”

I remember Dr. Cohen saying that as if it were yesterday. I can see where we were standing. I can see what I was wearing. I can see my wife crying. And then I remember very vividly his next sentence, “It’s ok. He’s going to be just fine.” Patrick had ruptured his appendix and if it weren’t for Dr. Cohen, the toxins released could have killed him within a few hours.

It happened between the first and second year of the Dave and Carole Miracle Marathon. I remember the first year of the marathon vividly, for a very embarrassing reason. On the morning of the first day of the telethon, I showed up late because I had driven downtown to the old location around 20th and Wisconsin. The hospital hadn’t been at that location for almost 10 years. Here I was, a guy with a 4-year old son who was about to go on the air for three days to raise money for the hospital, and I didn’t even know where it was located.

…Click here to continue reading

What would you do?

Everyone at the hospital knows me as a huge and vocal sports fan. So when the Milwaukee Bucks qualified for the playoffs this year, I had to do something to celebrate with the patients I see in the MACC Fund Center every day.

Check out my video to see what I did. I did this to give our patients a chance to laugh, have fun and be part of the excitement that comes with having our home team in the playoffs. I did it to raise awareness about the upcoming Miracle Marathon, which impacts the …Click here to continue reading