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Fresno area comes together, supports Valley Children’s Healthcare

UPDATE: March 13, 2019. According to  Adam Van Dusen, Executive Director of the Valley Children’s Healthcare Foundation, the Fresno area communities raised $634,301 and @CareForKids confirmed the amount with a Tweet.

Original article, March 8

According to The Fresno Bee, about 8,000 volunteers lined the streets of the central San Joaquin Valley to support the 32nd annual Kids Day, March 5, 2019. Students, families, and co-workers all joined together as a community to sell papers before the sun came up.

Julia Fikse | The Feather Online

FC mascot, Fierce, got in on the action at Blackstone and Shaw where he sold papers.

FCS students, leadership, and Feather staffers joined in on the action on street corners of Cedar and Alluvial, and Maple and Alluvial by 3:30 a.m.

A $1 purchase of a Fresno Bee special edition paper went to the Valley Children’s Foundation to saving kids lives and guaranteeing brighter futures. Since 1988, The Fresno Bee and ABC30 have partnered with Valley Children’s to put on this fundraising event. The Fresno Bee provides special edition newspapers with stories of Valley Children’s patients and the Kids Day ambassador, Bruce Mansy.

Nine-year-old Mansy was honored with the position as ambassador after overcoming a tragic car accident that left him paralyzed from the waist down. He now enjoys being a part of the Valley Children’s Adaptive Sports program, where he plays, basketball, rock climbing, and soon, rugby.

It is always great to see the generosity of this community on display. There’s a lot of times when will be out selling a paper which we sell for $1 and somebody else’s 20 bucks and say they don’t want to change. And so that is a good example of this community and how it gives back to this important institution. -Joe Kieta, Executive Editor, Fresno Bee

City leaders and Valley Children’s Hospital representatives sold newspapers at their own corner, Blackstone and Shaw. Adam Van Dusen, Executive Director of the Valley Children’s Healthcare Foundation, says Mansy takes full advantage of the Adaptive Sports Program.

“Bruce Mansy is in a wheelchair, but has not let that stop him,” Dusen said. “The way that that young man has overcome his obstacles and continues to participate and live life to the fullest, is really outstanding.”

Executive Editor of The Fresno Bee Joe Kieta enjoys seeing the community involvement of Fresno on display on Kids Day. He shares why.

“It is always great to see the generosity of this community on display,” Kieta said. “There’s a lot of times when will be out selling a paper which we sell for $1 and somebody else’s 20 bucks and say they don’t want to change. And so that is a good example of this community and how it gives back to this important institution.”

The following podcast includes Carston Saelzler, ’21, interviewing Fresno City Council Supervisor Steve Brandau during Kids Day at Shaw/Blackstone.

Jim Boren, executive director of the Institute for Media and Public Trust at Fresno State was also out selling Kids Day papers. He shares what he most likes about Kids Day.

“What I like about Kids Day is to have so many people in the community come together for a great cause, Valley Children’s Hospital,” Boren said. “It’s a time to celebrate what’s really good about our community. And we have politicians and celebrities and all sorts of folks who come together to talk about helping children what better cause can there be to support.”

Below is a tweet from Feather Adviser Kori Friesen retweeted by Valley Children’s.

Kids Day 2019 brought one challenge this year, rain. Fresno City Council Supervisor Steve Brandau was not afraid of the rain. He enjoys the challenge and the community involvement that Kids Day brings.

“You know (Kids Day) is great. The community coming together is the best thing,” Brandau said. “Everybody waving and honking and buying newspapers, supporting Valley Children’s Hospital and all the great things they’re doing for kids in the whole region. So that’s the best part. The big challenge has been the rain. But I think sometimes they see us out here working in the rain, and that even encourages them. So it’s been a blast.”

Last year 40 FC students raised over $2,500 for Kids Day 2018.

Julia Fikse | The Feather Online

John Monke, ’19, (right) sells a newspaper to FC secretary, Michelle Logan.

“It’s been fun with a lot of good people volunteering to get this done,” Brandau continued. Another best part is just seeing all the people in these orange vests supporting the community. The traffic is pulling at the red lights that they’ll give you $1 for a paper and they honk and wave It’s fantastic.”

For many FC students, who joined students from over 250 schools, this was their first time helping in Kids Day. Freshman Brynnor Poplin shares why he enjoyed his first Kids Day.

“I enjoyed selling newspapers and feeling like I made a difference for Children’s Hospital,” Poplin said. “One of my favorite memories was someone giving me $23 for just a $1 newspaper. I am going to do it next year. I think it is important to do this to serve our community and help out Children’s Hospital.”

Rylee Schwab, ’21, is a high school leadership student. She enjoyed Kids Day and believes that we are called as Christians to serve our neighborhoods and communities.

“What I enjoyed most about Kids Day was getting to wake up early getting to do something for others not for myself,” Schwab said. “It is important to serve because were commanded to by Jesus. It was really fun being able to do that.”

FC high school academic advisor Evangelina Tello was out on Maple and Alluvial bright and early with the students. She enjoyed seeing the students sell papers and benefit Valley Children’s Hospital.

“My favorite part about Kids Day was not only being able to support Valley Children’s, but also being around the Fresno Christian students who volunteer their time,” Tello said. “And I think that it is really awesome just to be able to support our students as well as Valley Children’s, and especially as the academic counselor getting to see our students get out there.”

According to The Fresno Bee, as of March 7, $481,642 has been counted so far towards the hospital goal of $625,000. In the following video filmed and produced by Ethan Hamm, Braden Bell and Austin Petersen, captures Fresno Christian students during Kids Day 2019.

There is still time to donate in support of Valley Children’s for Kids Day 2019, text GEORGE to 80077.

FC high school leadership and Feather staffers raised over $2,100 this Kids Day 2019. Way to go FCS! To read more article on Kids Day 2019, read 32 annual Kids Day 2019 and Kids Day 2019.

Bryce Foshee also contributed to this article. He can be reached via email and twitter.

Carston Saelzler can be reached via email.

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