Mission partners (employees) and volunteers go the extra mile
These employees and volunteers go above and beyond the call of duty to inspire support of OSF Foundation’s Mission. Their stories generate long-term, meaningful participation and measurable impact to support the philanthropic initiatives of OSF HealthCare.
As a nurse on the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois, Angela Farnan has cared for countless children over the years. Her work is dedicated to the patients she serves as well as caring for their families. She embodies the OSF HealthCare Mission of serving our patients with the greatest care and love in the spirit of Christ and in the example of Francis of Assisi.
While Angela cares for kids dealing with all types of conditions and illness, her primary focus is caring for children undergoing treatment at the Congenital Heart Center at OSF Children’s Hospital. It is the only comprehensive congenital heart program in the state that cares for kids and adults outside of Chicago.
Angela cares for these patients like they are her own children. She always dreamed of having her own biological children. However, soon after she married her husband, Rick, they discovered that she couldn’t get pregnant. But Angela didn’t dwell on this fate. She had her kids in the PICU. Then along came a special patient named Blaze.
Blaze was a newborn when he first came to the PICU in May of 2017. He was born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, a congenital heart defect that was detected in utero. Blaze’s condition requires that he undergo several surgeries from birth to age 4 or 5. His first surgery happened when he was just three days old. Angela was part of his care team during his recovery. During this time, she got to know Blaze’s mother. Blaze’s family is not from around the area close to the hospital, and the financial costs of traveling and having a newborn with a heart defect were quickly adding up for the family.
Angela did what she does best in caring for the family and the patient. After a few months, and many prayers and discussions, Blaze’s parents asked if Angela and Rick would become Blaze’s primary caregivers and officially adopt Blaze as their own.
Overjoyed, Angela and Rick now have a bouncing soon to be 2 year old. Blaze has brought a new sense of purpose to their family, and they are excited to see him grow. His third surgery is planned to occur between the age of 3 and 5. One day Blaze may need a heart transplant, but for now Angela and Rick are navigating life with a happy, active toddler.
You too can support patients in the PICU and walk in the footsteps of Angela and Rick. Donate now to support patients just like Blaze utilizing the Congenital Heart Center at OSF Children’s Hospital.
Wedding days are mostly about celebrating the new couple and showering them with gifts. But two OSF HealthCare employees chose to tie the knot rooted in their love for the OSF Mission. On November 10th of 2018, Mat Hanley and Jayme Nowell were married at the historic St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria, IL. However, when it came to the guests bringing gifts, they decided to steer away from the traditional route. The newlyweds elected to forego the traditional wedding registry and encouraged their wedding guests to donate in support of Almost Home Kids. According to Mat and Jayme, they chose to support Almost Home Kids because they believe that providing children happiness is the ultimate gift.
Almost Home Kids provides transitional care in a home-like setting for children with complex medical needs, as well as training and respite care for their families. The OSF Mission is to serve others with the greatest care and love, and according to the couple “this Mission reflects how we strive to live our lives.” Because of this need to serve others, they knew they wanted to give back to the children living at Almost Home Kids.
The bride and groom were able to incorporate a little piece of Almost Home Kids in several aspects of their wedding. From their invitations, to the day of event décor – they even had a card holder designed to look like the Almost Home Kids home. Jayme and Mat did all they could to celebrate and support the children and families of Almost Home Kids and they are truly an inspiration with their selfless act.
As the example shows above, there are so many creative ways to raise funds for OSF HealthCare. If interested, please reach out to OSF HealthCare Foundation to discuss. Also, you too can follow in the footsteps of Jayme and Mat by supporting OSF HealthCare and Almost Home Kids.
Joe’s Station House Pizza Pub, located in Bloomington-Normal, is a proud supporter of OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois. In July of 2019, Joe’s will be hosting their 10th annual Joe’s Charity Golf Classic in support of the OSF Children’s Hospital. Last year, the charity golf outing was able to raise $35,000 bringing their total funds raised to over $145,000 since the inaugural outing in 2009. For the 2019 event, co-owners Joe Wargo and Tony Wargo have chosen to support Almost Home Kids. OSF HealthCare is grateful for the continued support from Joe and Tony over the past ten years.
OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois is proud to offer an Almost Home Kids location – one of only three in the nation – locally here in Peoria. Robyn Wargo, organizer of the Joe’s Charity Golf Classic, sees how important a facility like this is to our community and the children we serve. In her words she shares, “While children and their families travel their difficult medical journeys, we are grateful to support a place that makes them feel more at home.” We are so thankful for generous supporters like Joe’s Station House Pizza Pub. Together we are demonstrating the OSF HealthCare Mission by serving our community with the greatest care and love.
Almost Home Kids provides transitional care in a home-like setting for children with complex medical needs, as well as training and respite care for their families. Funded entirely through community donations, Almost Home Kids is a 12-bedroom, 21,000-square-foot home.
Support the children currently living at the Almost Home Kids home – right here, right now.
Dana Platz, Imaging Coordinator, has been with OSF for over seventeen years, and has been a terrific supporter of the Foundation during that time. She’s also stepped up in the past years to serve as a Chapel Champion to rally the troops and fellow Mission Partners in raising funds for the new chapel soon to be built at OSF HealthCare St. Joseph Medical Center. Manager Karen Builta shares, “Dana is a true planner of organizing events to engage others and create excitement and fun for all involved. From her activities in the Junior Football league in her hometown of Fairbury to organizing efficiencies at work, she jumps right in and engages others. When determining how Medical Imaging could support the Chapel Challenge, she worked with other Mission Partners to plan a successful Fish Fry and enter “Team Monika” for the Chili Cook off. I am truly blessed to have her on the Medical Imaging Team to organize fun activities with great results!”
Dana explains that her family taught her to be grateful for all of the blessings that God has given them. “I feel grateful every day for having the opportunity to be a member of the OSF family and to Live the Mission of the Sisters. Donating to Mission Partner Giving Campaign is just one way to show my appreciation and give back for what God and the Sisters have done for me and my family. I feel honored that my gift, when added with everyone else’s, will help continue their Mission to provide the greatest care and love to all.”
People say it takes a village to raise a child. This is especially true for children with medical needs. We are grateful that Vicki and Randy Bahr are part of our village at OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois! Vicki and Randy have helped thousands of children and families in our community receive life-changing and life-saving care at OSF Children’s Hospital through sharing their blessings of time, talent and treasure.
Vicki and Randy became active with the Children’s Miracle Network Telethon in central Illinois in 1988 and been volunteering and raising funds for OSF Children’s Hospital ever since. Whether it is volunteering as a “dynamic duo” of fundraising events or Vicki’s service for over a decade on the OSF Children’s Hospital Community Advisory Board and its various committees, Vicki and Randy wear their passion for helping the kids at OSF Children’s Hospital on their sleeves!
In 2017, Vicki received the Christine Zak-Edmonds Volunteer Award. For over four decades, she has been involved with numerous activities that help children both within and outside of OSF Children’s Hospital. Besides serving on the By-Law Restructuring Committee, Vicki has chaired the Congenital Heart Committee and organized the Community Advisory Board mentoring program. Together, the husband and wife team have assisted with the Dancers with Heart fundraiser, volunteered for the BMW Golf Outing, served as VIPs and organized food donors and deliveries. Vicki and Randy have recruited fundraising groups and worked as VIP trainers.
Vicki and her husband, Randy, supported the new OSF Children’s Hospital project and were instrumental in establishing the first flexible endowment at OSF Children’s Hospital. When that magic birthday occurred and it was time to begin taking a Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) from his IRA, Randy decided to be very strategic with his philanthropy. Legally minimizing any additional income tax his RMD would bring, Randy and Vicki decided an IRA Charitable Rollover was the answer! They have supported the kids at OSF Children’s Hospital for years…now it was time to do something uniquely special. Vicki and Randy used an IRA Charitable Rollover gift to create the Vicki and Randy Bahr Flexible Endowment. This unique gifting tool allows them to recommend annually which funding priority at OSF Children’s Hospital they wish to support. An IRA Charitable Rollover gave Vicki and Randy the opportunity to do something very special for the children at OSF Children’s Hospital, in a very personal way. It gave them the tax benefits they were looking for and fulfilled a personal philanthropic goal at the same time.
IRA Charitable Rollover gifts can be directed to support any area of OSF HealthCare that is meaningful to you. To learn more about how an IRA Charitable Rollover gift might benefit you and help you meet your philanthropic goals, please contact Micki McCarthy, Director of Planned Giving at the OSF HealthCare Foundation, (309) 566-5653 or email@example.com. You can also learn more at osflegacyofhope.org.