Many of the rooms being used for children were in desperate need of refurbishment and needed to be made child friendly. The total cost to accomplish this was $10,100 per room.
Through the Pelican Landing community’s weekly mass email, a request for volunteers was sent out and more than 30 residents responded. The fledgling Pelican Landing Children’s Hospital Support Group was formed.
In their first year, the group raised more than $27,000 through multiple events to help with necessary enhancements to patient rooms.
Later that year, the Lee Health Board of Directors approved plans to build a free-standing Children’s Hospital adjacent to HealthPark Medical Center that would house all children’s services in one location and include growth for additional necessary and innovative services. The capital campaign to raise the $100 million dollars began.
Resident Pat Smart asked the Pelican Landing Board of Directors to approve the Support Group’s commitment to raise $500,000 to name four rooms in the new Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). To accomplish this goal, the Support Group organized multiple events, including an annual fashion show, golf tournaments, concerts, wine and cheese gatherings and more.
In December 2015, the committee exceeded their $500,000 goal by $125,000 which allowed them to name the four rooms in the NICU as well as donate outdoor play equipment for the Discovery Garden outside the hospital.
While the Pelican Landing Children’s Hospital Support Group raised their goal, they knew the need for support was still great. The committee continues to host the annual fashion show – even after the Golisano Children’s Hospital opened in May 2017.
Dr. Emad Salman, medical director for Golisano Children’s Hospital, told the committee that the hospital’s greatest need moving forward is support for Kids’ Minds Matter – Golisano Children’s Hospital’s mental health fund. With suicide being the leading cause of death for children ages 10-24 and a lack of mental health providers in our region, the committee decided that all future event proceeds will benefit this important fund.