Why We Walk
July 21, 2024
helping kids get back to being kids
When you sign up to fundraise for this year's anniversary celebration, you’re doing a good thing. A good thing for the kids in our community. That’s because you and your team will be on a path that leads to miracles and magic for kids in Southern California.
CHOC is a nonprofit healthcare system that provides pioneering, compassionate and customized care for infants, children, adolescents, teens and young adults. All of whom live in our region. Community philanthropy is the only way CHOC can help these young patients on their journeys to wellness and fundraising through CHOC Walk in the Park ensures that we can continue to nurture, advance and protect the health and well-being of our region’s children.
Why We Fundraise
In 2021, we not only adapted to the new challenges presented by the pandemic—we also took advantage of the new opportunities to push the boundaries of what is possible when it comes to caring for children. Philanthropy gave us hope to look forward to the future and embark toward uncharted destinations where we can advance and transform pediatric healthcare.
The CHOC Walk has been a three-decade-strong powerhouse of fundraising that brings in up to $3 million each year. The donations have an immediate impact to get critical care to kids and families when they need it most.
Every gift made to the CHOC Walk goes toward health care programs, education, and research for CHOC Children's in Orange and CHOC at Mission, and supports things like:
Care for All
Each year, CHOC treats over 185,000
children and teens, providing more than $149 million in uncompensated
care, which aids families without insurance or who have inadequate coverage.
Disney Art Installations
Through beautiful art installations, our patients and families can virtually and physically interact with their favorite Disney friends throughout CHOC’s main campus and the Thompson Autism Center in Orange.
Fetal Care Center
In partnership with UCI Health, this new venture is filling an unmet need in the region as one of the first fetal care centers in Southern California, bringing together experts in maternal-fetal medicine and pediatrics.
Outpatient Heart Center
This flagship, 10,000-square-foot space
on CHOC’s main Orange campus, provides
multidisciplinary pediatric cardiology
and cardiothoracic surgery outpatient
services—all under one roof.
CHOC is the first hospital to utilize Shogo, an electric ride-on vehicle for kids designed by Honda engineers, to help make patients' stay and transportation more enjoyable.
Meet Our Heroes
Heidi was diagnosed with leukemia in September 2018 after a visit to the emergency room, where she was cared for by a team of incredible people who made her smile, feel safe and feel better despite how ill she was. She gracefully and bravely battled her illness for over two years with her CHOC Oncology team by her side, which has become a second family to the Millers.
Heidi will be celebrating her 10th birthday this summer and her family continues to show their gratitude to CHOC by being part of CHOC Walk so that others can receive the same life-saving care. The family’s favorite moment came during the 2019 CHOC Walk, when Heidi was surrounded by people who cheered her on in her wheelchair when she was too weak to walk through the Park. These moments made her feel like a normal kid, and not a child battling for her life.
Savannah & Sebastian
At birth, Savannah was in respiratory distress due to a severe meconium aspiration, which caused her lungs to become extremely damaged. She was immediately transferred to CHOC where she was put on ECMO, a machine that provided life support and gave her lungs a chance to recover. While at CHOC, she met Sebastian and his parents who were two floors above them. Sebastian was born with HRHS, a rare congenital heart defect, and has gone through four open-heart surgeries while at CHOC.
With the amazing work from the CHOC doctors, nurses and feeding team, Savannah and Sebastian overcame what seemed to be an impossible start. Today, six-year-olds Savannah and Sebastian are inseparable and walk together in the CHOC Walk for all the other CHOC babies.
Jordan Kalua Cline
Jordan was one of four bustling boys and filled his home with love, joy, and absolute craziness. After three years of insufficient weight gains and other issues, he was ultimately diagnosed with Mitochondrial Deletion Syndrome. His was a childhood intersecting horse rides and forts with feeding tubes and pacemakers, yet Jojo still had an amazing resilience to love life no matter what came his way.
At a precious 7 years of age, Jojo took his last breath on February 5th, 2018. Amazingly Jojo’s story did not stop there, his legacy lives on in those that were fortunate enough to meet him and through the love and passion of his CHOC Walk team Live Like Jojo. Jojo taught us a powerful life-lesson; make the connection, savor the moment, find the joy.