For Lurie Children’s employees, their jobs are about much more than just a paycheck. In fact, many of our 4,900 employees also generously give back to support the hospital through the “We Are Lurie Children’s” annual fundraising campaign, and by participating in a wide variety of fundraising events for hospital.
Meet some our employee donors, and learn why they give back.
As a pediatric physical therapist at Lurie Children’s, Carolyn Nugent works with babies, children and adolescents who have health issues associated with motor development and movement disorders.
After being diagnosed with cancer in 2014, I became painfully aware of the lack of research funding for pediatric cancer. Although I was undergoing chemo treatments, I ran the Bank of America Chicago Marathon as a member of the hospital’s marathon team in 2014 and again in 2015 to honor several of my current and former patients. Through pledges, I was able to raise more than $15,000 for cancer care and research at Lurie Children’s. I’ve also participated in other athletic fundraising events for the hospital, including the Aon Step Up for Kids stair climb and the Run for Gus 5K Run/1 Mile Walk for brain tumor research.
The best part of working at the hospital is that you can genuinely feel the love for the kids and families we care for from everyone who works here. When I think of Lurie Children’s, I think of a giant extended family of people who stand with open arms ready to support you.
Facility Services electrician Jesus Fregoso has worked at Lurie Children’s for 42 years, working on everything from small repairs to testing the hospital’s six emergency backup generators.
I give back to support the hospital because the hospital does so much for kids and families. In fact, I love to tell people where I work, because this is a great hospital. That’s why I’ve been here for so long. I love the way everyone works together to help the kids. It inspires me to know that kids are getting the best care. But what inspires me even more is when I see a kid going home from the hospital. I love that!
Last year I made an extra donation and I got a really nice fleece “We Are Lurie Children’s” jacket. In fact, a lot of people asked me where I got it, and I told them that it was from donating. Sometimes I hear people I know say, “I can’t afford to donate.” They don’t realize that even small donations help. I also tell them that giving to help others makes you feel really good about yourself.
For the last 22 years, Lurie Children’s Director of Child Advocacy Jim Harisiades has worked to reduce health, safety and social risk factors in children. These efforts include fostering partnerships between the hospital and the community to promote health and reduce injuries. Jim has led and facilitated community partnerships to support child health.
I give back to Lurie Children’s because I believe in its mission. I’m also strongly motivated to help others because of my family background. My parents were the children of immigrants, and they experienced extreme poverty and significant trauma growing up. Both died young, but their stories of how people served as advocates to help them attain more stable lives remain with me. These advocates also strengthened their capacity to give my brothers and me better lives than their own.
Working at Lurie Children’s provides me with the opportunity to personally honor and perpetuate the advocacy afforded to them (and to me by extension) on behalf of other vulnerable children and youth. It reinforces my belief that children’s lives can become stronger and healthier from one generation to the next.
A 35-year hospital employee, Jacquenette Brown is an Account Representative in Patient Financial Services. She has given to the hospital since the employee giving program began.
When I was a child, I had a cousin whose life was saved at the hospital. That made a big impression on me long before I started working here. One thing people may not realize is that there are a lot of people who can’t afford to pay for our services because they don’t have insurance. But their children still receive treatment here because of charity care. And donations help pay for charity care.
I’m very proud to say I work at Lurie Children’s, a place that has blessed my life in so many ways. In fact, even after I retire I plan to continue to donate to the hospital. This is an excellent hospital, with the best programs and services available to families. I tell people that if their child ever gets sick, this is the best hospital to bring them to.
You too can make a gift to provide hope to patients and families at Lurie Children’s.