Rain or shine, SJVC volunteers support Kids Day for Valley Children’s Hospital
Editor’s Note: This post has been updated to reflect two SJVC campuses being recognized for raising the most funds in the College category for the 32nd annual Kids Day to benefit Valley Children’s Hospital.
Despite the rain on March 5, students at several San Joaquin Valley College campuses were proud to support the 32nd annual Kids Day to benefit Valley Children’s Hospital.
Dozens of SJVC students from Fresno, Madera, Porterville, Visalia and Hanford all hit the streets as early as 5:30 a.m. wearing bright orange vests to sell special editions of The Fresno Bee for a $1 donation.
“After selling all 400 newspapers we committed to sell, we submitted $1,006,” said Glenn Elizarde, Dean of Student Services at SJVC Fresno. “Despite the gloomy weather, our spirits shined bright.”
The hospital has raised more than $9 million in Kids Day donations since the first event was held more than 30 years ago. Every year, students from more than 235 elementary schools and universities are among the volunteers, including those from SJVC.
“I really enjoyed the Kids Day experience. It was nice to be able to work with my classmates outside of class for a good cause,” said Michaela Newitt, a student in the Veterinary Assistant program. “The day was full of laughter and fun, but in total was very successful,” she added.
Aside from providing a valuable community service opportunity for students, the event provides support to Valley Children’s Hospital in a variety of different ways.
Last year’s donations went towards buying much-needed medical equipment, including the region’s first EOS imaging system, which produces full-body 3D images while exposing children to significantly less radiation.
The donations also provide relief by helping to pay for the hospital’s social workers. This includes hospital interpreters, who provide communication services for patients at no cost to the families.
Additionally, thanks to the contributions from Valley residents, donations from Kids Day will go to support the hospital’s Child Life program, which uses specialists to provide education and emotional support for patients and families.
Clinical Medical Assisting program instructor Laura Cervantez had experience participating in the longtime Valley tradition of Kids Day, according to Adriana Ruiz, Campus President of SJVC Porterville.
“Recognizing we want our students to learn the value of community involvement and giving back, Laura organized for SJVC’s Porterville campus to participate in this excellent fundraising event in the Porterville community,” added Ruiz. “It was great seeing students from all of our programs (Clinical Medical Assisting, Medical Office Administration and Business Administration) working together to benefit a great cause, Valley Children’s hospital.”
Every year, Kids Day provides a valuable opportunity for the community to come together and show support for Valley Children’s Hospital. SJVC students and faculty are honored to have participated in the event and be a part of the community that each campus serves.
Update: Since this post was originally shared, both the SJVC Hanford and Visalia campuses were recognized at the Valley Children’s Hospital’s celebration on March 29, 2019, for placing in the top three College Level category for most funds raised. The honor reflects the importance SJVC places in community involvement. Cari Stockdale, Campus Dean for SJVC Hanford, attended the celebration and would like to give a special “thank you” to all the students and employees who helped make it possible for SJVC to support Valley Children’s Hospital as part of Kids Day.