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Our Summer Toy Drive with FUNdamentals!

September 3rd, 2011 by jnedley

The kids at FUNdamentals sold baked goods to raise money to buy toys for a new pediatric oncology playroom at The Cleveland Clinic.

In many ways, the template for the mission of The Carter Nedley Foundation was laid for us by the wonderful people at Menorah Park and at FUNdamentals, Menorah Park’s fantastic child-care center.

In February 2009, after Carter’s first round of chemotherapy at The Cleveland Clinic, Menorah Park and FUNdamentals organized “Caring for Carter,” a fundraiser for the Nedley family.  The event featured a bake sale, a 50-50 raffle, sales of arts and crafts, and drives for blood donation and marrow-donor registration.  We even got some green silicone bracelets debossed with “Caring for Carter,” which we’ll treasure forever.

About a year later, after Carter passed away, The Menorah Park Foundation established The Carter Nedley Memorial Fund to support the infant room at FUNdamentals.

We’ve never forgotten these very touching gestures, and always will be grateful to the staff of Menorah Park and FUNdamentals for all their support.

But for the support they’ve continued to show The Carter Nedley Foundation, our feelings go way beyond grateful.  When they help us, they’re not just helping one family anymore — they’re helping an entire hospital.

Thanks to Menorah Park and to FUNdamentals for their incredible contribution to our Summer Toy Drive.

Last year Menorah Park and FUNdamentals helped us to supply the patients and families of the Clinic’s pediatric-oncology inpatient unit with more than 200 DVDs for the flashy new players installed in their rooms.

This summer, they went beyond even that.  During a recent visit to the Clinic, we learned that the pediatric-oncology inpatient unit was planning a new playroom, and wanted donations of toys and art supplies to stock it.  So we asked Menorah Park and FUNdamentals if they again wanted to partner with us, this time on a summer toy drive for the Clinic.

They agreed, clearing space for us to set up two large boxes (like, the kind you’d use to ship a dryer) to collect donations.  Soon after, the boxes were filled with baby toys, Barbie dolls, building blocks, board games, crayons, markers, construction paper, and Play-Doh.

Some of the donations came, even, as a result of some hard work from the kids at FUNdamentals, who held a bake sale to raise money to buy toys (see the picture above).  We’re told they raised more than $300.

The Carter Nedley Foundation went on a little shopping spree, too, hoping to match what we got from Menorah Park and FUNdamentals. How do you think we did?

Afterwards, we went on a little shopping spree, adding a heaping trunkful of new baby toys and art supplies to match the haul from Menorah Park and FUNdamentals.

Lucky for us, we drive an SUV with removable back seats.  Otherwise, we might have needed two trips to get everything to the Clinic.

We met the Clinic’s Child Life team curbside at the front doors of the Miller Family Pavilion, and with their help loaded everything onto carts.

A short while later, we received a wonderful thank-you letter from Child Life:

On behalf of the patients, families, and staff at Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital, I would like to thank you for your donation of toys and crafts for the oncology population…

The Clinic's Child Life staff helps us to unload the donations of toys and crafts for the pediatric-oncology inpatient unit.

The number of toys, games, and crafts your foundation was able to donate to us is amazing.  It has fully stocked the toy cupboards on M50 which will undoubtedly provide hours of entertainment and fun to our patients.

Your support is appreciated more than you can imagine by our staff and by the patients and families we serve.  We appreciate your thoughtfulness and generosity!

You’re welcome.  Hopefully, we’re just getting started.

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