CHOP Cares Community Grants Awarded Spring 2015

The CHOP Cares Community Fund and Grants Program awards grants to CHOP employees to cover expenses for health-related projects that fulfill specific needs in one of the many communities CHOP serves. Read more about the CHOP Cares Community Grants awarded in the spring of 2015 and how they are impacting children and families in the community.

The Diabetes Parent Support Network

Judith Ayala, LCSW, CDE
Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes

The Diabetes Parent Support Network is a support group for parents with children who have diabetes to connect with other families. The group meets every other month to discuss the challenges they confront in trying to live well with diabetes. The support network provides families with education on specific topics pertinent to managing diabetes, while connecting them to other families for additional support. This grant funded the support groups for one year.

Providing Baby WipesProviding Baby Wipes

Lynn Shesser, RN, MSN, MBA
Home Care

The Mitzvah Circle Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides material support to individuals and families dealing with crisis, poverty, homelessness and serious illness. The grant funds were used to assist the foundation’s Critical Needs program by providing diaper wipes and baby wash to supplement its Diaper Bank.

Family Fun and Fitness DayFamily Fun and Fitness Day

Melissa Berrios Johnson, MSW
Homeless Health Initiative 

CHOP’s Homeless Health Initiative (HHI) provides free health services, access to primary care services, health education, and nutrition and fitness programs on-site in homeless shelters. This grant funded HHI's third annual Family Fun & Fitness Day, a fun day of games and activities that serves as an extension of its health education and nutrition and fitness program, Operation CHOICES.

Special Trips for Special BabiesSpecial Trips for Special Babies

Hallam Hurt, MD
Department of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology

The Special Babies Clinic of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia is a follow-up clinic for high-risk infants. During the summer, the clinic provides special trips for babies in the program to the Philadelphia Zoo and the Please Touch Museum. The grant helped fund transportation, zoo and museum tickets, and refreshments for the families that participated..

Relationship Smarts 

Carrie Snyder, MSN, CRNP
Karabots Pediatric Care Network

One in three (34 percent) teen mothers do not earn a diploma or GED, and less than 2 percent of teen mothers complete college by age 30. The School District of Philadelphia ranks among the 25 persistently low-achieving school districts in the United States. These low-achieving schools account for 20 percent of all high school dropouts as well as 16 percent of teen births in the country. Partnering with BOOST, Lutheran Family Services’ out of school time program, and the Jewish and Family Children’s Services of Greater Philadelphia, this grant funded a 12-week Relationship Smarts curriculum at Ethel Allen, Hopkinson, Anderson, Bryant and Austin Meehan schools, targeting seventh- and eighth-graders in an effort to improve these statistics.

Overcoming Barriers to Treatment: The Kolbe Fund Hopeful Nights Program

Andrea Mattie, MSW and Anne Marie Florio, MSW, LSW
Center for Rehabilitation

The Kolbe Fund is a nonprofit organization with the mission to support families that must travel to obtain pediatric and mental healthcare. Its Hopeful Night Program was created to provide short-term lodging for struggling families whose options are limited or exhausted. The Kolbe Fund supports families when the Ronald McDonald Houses do not have vacancies and has partnered with local hotels to provide rooms at no cost to the family. This grant helped fund short-term accommodations for families whose children are receiving specialized care at area hospitals.

Engaging Young Adult Cancer Survivors through University Outreach

Dava Szalda, MD, Lisa Schwartz, PhD, Wendy Hobbie, RN, and Jill Ginsberg, MD 
Division of Oncology

Young adult survivors of pediatric malignancy are growing in numbers because of advances in treatment. Unfortunately, survivors are at risk for chronic health conditions because of the late effects of toxic treatments that may not become apparent until years or decades after treatment. Late effects may include second cancers, organ dysfunction (including heart and lung disease), problems with growth and development, and psychosocial issues. Guidelines advise that young adult survivors of childhood cancer engage in life-long cancer-focused follow-up care to screen for and manage these late effects of therapy. This grant funded an in-service educational session on long-term follow-up guidelines for cancer survivorship for college health center medical providers.

West Philadelphia Running SeriesWest Philadelphia Running Series 

Rachel DeHaven
Healthy Weight Program

With childhood obesity rates continuing to rise in most age groups across Philadelphia, the need for healthy lifestyle options in the community continues to be critical. The Healthy Kids Running Series (HKRS) mission is to provide children with a positive, educational and fun experience in the world of running. The Healthy Weight Program at CHOP initiated HKRS in West Philadelphia in April 2014. The HKRS takes place in the spring and fall for children in Pre-K to eighth grade. The five-week series features age-appropriate running events, with plenty of encouragement. This grant helped fund subsides for children to participate in HKRS.


James Cartin
Facilities Services, Real Estate and Construction Management

EcoCHOP repurposes items no longer needed at CHOP and donates them to local organizations, including homeless shelters, churches and other social service agencies. This grant funded transportation and delivery costs for the donated items.  

Hippo Car SeatHippo Car Seat 

Karen Siegel, MSW, LSW and Maria Rodriguez, LSW
Home Care

In 2014, 81 children admitted to CHOP for lower extremity orthopedic surgery were casted with a spica cast — which keeps their legs in a spread position — before they were discharged home. They need the cast for anywhere from a month to three months, depending on the condition being treated. Spica casting makes it impossible for a child to fit in a traditional car seat. This grant helped fund an inventory of Hippo Car Seats, which accommodate the spica casts. Seats are rented out to families at low cost to ensure safe transportation from discharge until the cast comes off.

Health Education and HIV Testing in the Emergency Department 

Cynthia Mollen, MD, MSCE
Division of Emergency Medicine

Many adolescents living with HIV are unaware of their HIV positive status. The Emergency Department (ED) may serve as the primary source of healthcare for adolescents, making the ED an important site for HIV counseling and testing. In 2004, CHOP's Adolescent Initiative and the Emergency Department created a partnership to secure a health education specialist to provide rapid HIV Testing and risk reduction counseling of adolescents seeking care at the Main Campus ED. This grant helped support the medical supplies needed to provide high-quality, free, confidential and rapid HIV testing in the ED for one year.

iCan Shine Bike Camp for Children with Developmental Disabilities 

Ann Tokay Harrington, PT, DPT, PhD, PCS
Center for Rehabilitation

iCan Shine, Inc. is a bike camp for children with developmental disabilities. Children with disabilities participate in less physical activity than typically developing children and often participate at a lower level of exertion when they do participate. The camp uses proven techniques to train children to ride through a five-day intensive training camp. The grant funds were used to provide camp scholarships for 10 adolescents to participate in the summer camp. 

Standing for Unity: Youth Against Bullying and Other Violence

Joy Burrell
Environmental Services

This grant helped start a youth volunteering program at a local church in West Philadelphia as a way to keep children busy and curb bullying in the community. Participants volunteered at various local organizations, such as Philabundance. The program also invited guest speakers to talk to participants about what they can do to limit bullying and violence in their community.

Pediatrics Volunteer Project 2015

Eileen Drames
Department of Pediatrics

Each year, the administrators and managers in the Department of Pediatrics volunteer for a community service project. In 2015, the group volunteered at the Enterprise Center Community Development Corporation’s Walnut Hill Community Farm in West Philadelphia. This grant helped fund gardening supplies for the project. Volunteers assisted with the rebuilding of the community garden beds at the Walnut Hill Community Farm, which was once a vacant lot.

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