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by Karen Redlener, Executive Director, Children's Health Fund
Today is an exciting day for all of us at Children’s Health Fund (CHF). For starters, with this first official blog post, CHF is entering the blogosphere (wait until I tell my kids that I am a blogger). We hope you enjoy CHF’s blog and rely on it as a resource and a platform for thought-provoking discussion. Please don't be shy...we want your comments and feedback.
Equally exciting, today is a day that has been on CHF’s calendar of events for months. Airing tonight from 8 pm - 10 pm ET on FOX is American Idol “Idol Gives Back” (IGB)-the Emmy-winning television event and musical celebration that has raised more than $140 million to benefit charities around the world and across the United States. CHF is extremely grateful and excited to have been chosen as a beneficiary of IGB for the third time. Since 2007, Idol funding has helped CHF’s 24 programs provide more than 650,000 health care visits to some of our nation's poorest children and families in urban and rural communities. And that is just the beginning. We know that with the help of American Idol and Idol fans, our programs will continue to grow and thrive, allowing CHF to continue to bring health care to kids across the nation.
We hope you will watch American Idol "Idol Gives Back" tonight, not only to see some great performances, but also to see one of CHF’s programs at work. Featured on the show will be one of CHF’s families from our program in Southern Arizona-a program that launched in 2009 thanks largely in part to money we received from American Idol “Idol Gives Back”.
A few weeks ago, I joined American Idol judge Simon Cowell at our program in Douglas, Arizona. Simon saw first-hand how difficult it is for many of these families to access health care (even with health insurance) because of factors like a shortage of doctors and specialists, transportation issues, or language and cultural barriers. It is challenges like these that prevent many kids from just getting to a regular well-child visit to treat a chronic illness before it results in a more serious ER visit or preventable hospitalization. With your help, and with funding from “Idol Gives Back,” Children’s Health Fund will be able to continue to tackle these barriers and provide comprehensive health care services for even more children across the country.
Be sure to visit our IGB pages (http://www.childrenshealthfund.org/idol-gives-back) to see photos of Idol judges visiting some of CHF’s programs, video of how IGB money has helped CHF so far, and how your donation can help children in need.
And please, come back often, this post is just the beginning! In the future you will be hearing from others all across our organization--from our President Irwin Redlener, to our advocacy team who is busy working with representatives in DC on the health care reform bill, to the plethora of wonderful doctors across CHF's network caring for thousands of children across the US. We are excited about this new endeavor and hope you are too!