RiverDogs, fans go to bat for new children’s hospital

Melissa Varner
October 02, 2019
RiverDogs President/GM Dave Echols, Children’s Miracle Network Champion David Powell, Haley Kirchner, Sarahann Powell, and Della Powell.
RiverDogs President/GM Dave Echols, Children’s Miracle Network Champion David Powell, Haley Kirchner, Sarahann Powell, and Della Powell.

Charleston RiverDogs fans are helping stock the MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital and Pearl Tourville Women’s Pavilion with toys, books, movies, and crafts before it opens this fall. The minor league baseball team collected donations for the new children’s hospital at their August games.

Wishlist Toys
“Filling a big hospital with new toys is always a tough feat, so it’s great to have the support of the community,” Kirchner said. “We've had a really great turnout so far.”

The haul includes DVDs, paints, Play-Doh, Hot Wheels, and books for children of all ages – from classic board books like “I Love You, Too” to hardcover best-sellers like “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.”

The RiverDogs love it when fans donate books to MUSC because their players enjoy reading to patients during their visits to the Child Life Atrium, says RiverDogs Community Relations Manager Brooke Swetenburg. The RiverDogs and mascot Charlie try to visit the MUSC Children’s Hospital at least once a month during baseball season. They also step up to the plate the rest of the year – giving game tickets to patients’ families and donating food and auction items when needed.

At the last game of the 2019 season, they presented MUSC Children’s Health with a check for $20,000.

“Thank you, not only for a great partnership, but for being more than a monetary partnership,” said Haley Kirchner, special events coordinator for the Children’s Hospital Fund. “It’s really nice to have such a great organization so close by, supporting us in all aspects of our fundraising.”

“We're just really excited that we got to be a part of this,” Swetenburg said. “The MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital looks incredible. Every single aspect of the hospital was intentional, and just really formed around families.”

The new hospital will have more space for children to play, including a new central atrium and nine new activity rooms. There is a wish list of items needed to fill all those rooms. “Filling a big hospital with new toys is always a tough feat, so it’s great to have the support of the community,” Kirchner said. “We've had a really great turnout so far.”

“Thank you guys so much,” Swetenburg said. “We can't do it without people in the community helping us. It's always so encouraging and uplifting to see how much our fans care about the community around them.”

 

About the Author

Melissa Varner

Keywords: Pediatrics, Thank You Notes