08Mar

Advocacy: Build-a-Bear and St. Jude’s Hospital Team Up

It was a no-brainer.  When I serendipitously got the invite to the Build-a-Bear /St. Judes event featuring Marlo Thomas and Maxine Clark, even though it was on a ridiculously  busy day of the week for me with work and the kids, I knew I had to go.   The occasion was for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital’s launch of its  Cause for Celebration program.  Even though I could have found someone to pick up my son at school as Mondays are his short day where he’s in kindergarten for a total of 3 hours, I decided immediately that he had to come with me to experience the joy of seeing children from the hospital experience joy.  I als0 wanted to see my childhood heroine, Marlo Thomas, who I adored from That Girl and “Free to be You and Me,” the soundtrack that led me through childhood.  I know the words to every song on that album by heart.  Thomas defines the women’s revolution as she has been representing women’s independence all throughout her career.  I also got to meet Maxine Clark, the founder of Build-a-Bear and a pioneer in the women’s movement.

Starting today, Build-A-Bear Workshop will match each Guest’s $10 donation when a St. Jude party is scheduled up to the first 1,000 St. Jude parties.  The entire ten dollar donation will be directed to St. Jude to support life-saving research and treatment at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.  In honor of each Guest donation to the hospital to help with their important research and treatment, Build-A-Bear Workshop will, in addition, give a St. Jude patient a gift card to experience the fun of making their very own furry friend at any Build-A-Bear Workshop store nationwide and in Canada.

The joy of going to an event like this today is experiencing a truly good initiative which has the sole aim to do good, to make a difference.  While my son happily built his own build-a-bear with the other children, we met local children who came to help celebrate, we heard from Maxine talk about the initiative and we heard Marlo Thomas spoke about her own involvement with the hospital.  Take a look here:

 

We also met 3 children who are current residents of the hospital: Ella, Alejandro and Cameron.  Young children suffering from cancer or another catastrophic disease, they are all celebrating milestones in their treatment and were brought to the store to celebrate.  My son joined in their playtime with the build-a-bear leaters while I met Ella and her passionate mother, her biggest and fiercest advocate, who told me Ella’s story.  It put everything in perspective for me. Watch here:

 

Here are some photos from the memorable event:

 

St. Jude's

Ella and her fiercest advocate, her mother

 

Build a Bear

Entertaining the kids from St. Judes at Build-a-Bear

Build a Bear Marlo Thomas

Marlo Thomas entertaining the kids from a NYC elementary school

St. Judes Build a Bear

The board of stickers from each young participant

 

 

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is the nation’s leading research and treatment center for children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases.  No child is ever turned away because of a family’s inability to pay.  They cover all costs for treatment, travel, food and lodging for patients and one family member.  St. Jude freely shares its discoveries with the medical community worldwide.  St. Jude has the largest protocol-based pediatric brain tumor research program in the country and has one of the largest pediatric sickle cell disease programs in the country.  St. Jude discovered a way to lessen side effects, making radiation treatment more effective for virtually all cancers.

This is the type of event I dream about as a blogger.  It was an opportunity to teach my son about generosity and altruism.  I have high hopes for the Build-A-Bear/St. Judes partnership.  Please book your BAB party today and make a difference.

Disclosure: I was invited to this event as a blogger.  I was not compensated for this review.  All opinions expressed are my own.

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Comments

  1. Such a wonderful experience for you and Max. He is a lucky little boy to have
    a Mom that will take him to Events to learn and to grow. I remember hearing
    the Music. Free to Be You and Me and you got to meet the Star.