Giving Tuesday is a world-renowned day of giving back every year - a way to stop for just a moment and remember those who need help. Normally, Giving Tuesday is the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving but in light of the global COVID-19 pandemic, May 5 has been designated Giving TuesdayNOW to help those who need it most during this difficult time.
Giving TuesdayNOW is a way to support the kids of The Valerie Fund now when they need help the most. Many of our kids are immuno-compromised and at higher risk of the novel coronavirus. Going through or having completed treatment means many of our TVF children have weakened immune systems so they need to be extra careful in these times but what does that mean for them exactly? And what is The Valerie Fund doing for our kids that require support? Let's take a look at where The Valerie Fund stands amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and what your support on Giving TuesdayNOW would mean for our families.
The staff of the Valerie Fund Children's Center at Morristown Medical Center.
• All Valerie Fund Children’s Centers continue to operate with both medical and psychosocial staff. The children continue to receive the highest quality of care close to home, which is more crucial than ever in our current environment.
• The Centers continue to provide the highest quality of care while following new hospital rules ensuring extra caution to avoid infections. Outside visitors are not permitted and there are limitations as to how many family members can accompany a child.
• All non-essential care is treated by telemedicine, phone, or postponed.
• To minimize the risk of exposure to COVID-19, the centers are offering telemedicine for those children who do not have to come in to receive chemotherapy or infusions. Many of the social workers, psychologists, and educational specialists are “seeing” and offering psychosocial care to their patients through Zoom conferences or FaceTime sessions. This protects everyone and allows our clinicians to be there for the kids in every way possible.
The staff of the Valerie Fund Children's Center at St. Joseph's Medical Center.
“We are hanging in there. It’s tough treating kids fighting for their lives in a pandemic,” says a seasoned Valerie Fund caregiver who has treated thousands of children with cancer and blood disorders.
Donations garnered from Giving TuesdayNOW will do more than continue to run our seven Valerie Fund Children's Centers in hospitals across the NJ region. In addition to providing the psychosocial support staff in the hospitals, this global health crisis has presented additional hardships for our families.
We are being asked to provide thousands of dollars in new ShopRite and American Express gift cards to support families where parents are out of work with children now home from school 24/7. The Valerie Fund is also providing supplies and protective uniforms for our psychosocial staff when needed to keep them safe. And we are being asked to provide electronics like laptops and tablets needed by our students as everyone has to learn from home - whether they have the proper tools to do so or not.
These gift cards, laptops, and more are all in addition to the services we provide to 6,000 every day. If you'd like to read more about what we do to take care of our families and how your donations are utilized, you can read our 2019 Impact Report for the full story and explanation. You can read it by clicking here.
And remember the new $300 charitable tax deduction for those of us who will not itemize in 2020 created through the CARES Act to encourage much-needed philanthropy. Please consider this when you support The Valerie Fund families on Giving TuesdayNOW.