All About Children's Hospital Foundation - MetroFamily Magazine
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All About Children's Hospital Foundation

by Rebecca Lucas

Reading Time: 3 minutes 

Jan Dunham joined Children’s Hospital Foundation in January of 1999. She began with the organization as Public Relations Director, in March of the same year she was promoted to Director of Children’s Miracle Network with the primary task of securing corporate and local sponsors for the ongoing CMN Campaign and providing support for certain corporately sponsored fundraising events. The money raised benefits Children’s Hospital Foundation to help enhance the health of Oklahoma’s Children through pediatric research at the OU Medical Center.

Name of Organization:
Children’s Hospital Foundation
800 Research Parkway, Suite 150
OKC, OK 73104-3614

Describe the mission of your non-profit:

Children’s Hospital Foundation raises money for pediatric research, education and clinical care. All funds raised in Oklahoma, stay in Oklahoma to treat and care for our children, so Oklahoma’s children don’t have to leave the state to receive the best care possible. Since 1983, Children’s Hospital Foundation, has helped to build a community of experts in child care in a number of essential fields.

Subsequently, the leaders of the Children’s Hospital Foundation endowed research and education programs have overseen thriving departments, groundbreaking research and growing patient responsiveness in order to better treat illness and injury in both general and specialized areas.

Though all of our endowed chair doctors see many patients each year, they also teach the next generation of physicians at the OU College of Medicine and perform critical research in their areas of expertise. Children’s Hospital Foundation exists both to develop research and to develop relationships with Oklahoma children when they need it most.

Children’s Hospital Foundation has helped fund and recruit 18 chair positions in emerging and ongoing areas of paediatrics. Without matching funds previously provided by the state, the funding need for more pediatric specialists in Oklahoma remains great.

A nationwide shortage of specialists exists, making it more difficult for children to get the specialized care they need close to home. As the Oklahoma Campaign for Children’s Health focuses on therecruitment and retention of highly skilled pediatric medical professionals, it is vital that we fund additional endowed chair positions, labs, research programs, equipment and facilities. The Capital Campaign offers opportunities to name portions of the state-of-the-art facilities.

How does it impact families and children, whether locally or elsewhere?

This makes life so much easier for the ill children of Oklahoma and their families. It assures families excellent care that is close to home and less disruptive for their children and the family members.

What drives you to make this non-profit a success?

Knowing that every day we have a chance to make a big difference in the lives of sick children by providing the best doctors, clinical care and research available right here in our own state.

What success stories or accomplishments has this non-profit achieved?

We have raised more than $80 million dollars for endowments, scholarships, research grants and equipment. We have recruited 18 world class physicians/scientists and have 15 endowed chairs in development. In 2009 The Children’s Hospital at OU Medical Center had 168,223 inpatient and outpatient visits. We host four major fundraising events each year in support of Children’s Hospital Foundation and Children’s Miracle Network. They are the annual KXY Loves Kids Radiothon, Children’s Miracle Network Telecast, The Starlight Ball or A Vintage Affair (in alternating years) and our Dancing for a Miracle Gala. Each of these events continue to grow and we consistently surpass our previous years’ fundraising efforts.

How can families and children help this non-profit?

We are always looking for volunteers to help in our fundraising efforts.  We are constantly seeking the involvement of individuals, schools and other local sponsors who have the ability to host various fundraising events to benefit Children’s Hospital Foundation and our ongoing efforts. There are so many ways this can be accomplished.

What led you to work for this nonprofit?

Being instrumental in making something good happen is very important to me and there really isn’t a better feeling than knowing you can play a part in making life better for a sick child.

What was your best day so far?

I have had so many best days, when I hear that a child has beat cancer, has come through a major surgery successfully, or has overcome a difficult medical problem that could have taken their life but because of research and our excellent doctors that child is now thriving, healthy and happy.

In addition it is gratifying that after working on an event for months and it turns out wonderful. People had great fun and raised needed money to further research. Life is good and it is a really good day!

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