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La Fiesta de Arte Receives Support from Chicago Steel & School of Art Geneva

On October 1, 2018 the Chicago Steel hockey team lent their support for a painting workshop at the School of Art in Geneva. This workshop was to prepare artwork to be donated for the benefit of the Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope’s La Fiesta de Arte upcoming event to be held at El Molcajete Restaurant in Geneva on Sunday, October 21 from 3-6pm.

Mary Jane Johnson-AAFH Board member and Yoli Alvin-AAFH President met at the School of Art and met with the Chicago Steel hockey team and their leadership: Greg Moore-Head Coach, Dan Lehv-President and Kyle Kreger-VP. We watched as the hockey team participated in creating an art piece for the upcoming La Fiesta de Arte fundraising event.

The Chicago Steel are entering their 19th season in the United States Hockey League (USHL) and fourth season playing at Fox Valley Ice Arena in Geneva, IL.

The School of Art in Geneva is designed to teach all ages a variety of mediums. The School of Art teaches everything from basic drawing and painting through full interactive animation and robotics. Students are taught to see the world through artist’s eyes.

We are very grateful to Vinny, Jen, and Hannah from the School of Art in Geneva for selecting us as a non-for-profit organization to partner and work with us in fundraising events.

Last year's La Fiesta de Arte event, which is a major fundraiser for the Alyssa Foundation for Hope, was a great success thanks to all our attendees, volunteers, Board members, officers and business/private donors. Our goal is to make this year's La Fiesta de Arte event even better. We look forward to your support as it is vital to the ongoing success of our efforts to provide hope and joy to children and young adults whose lives are affected by a life-threatening disease.

Attendees to this year’s event will enjoy diverse artwork from local artists and featured artist, Vincent Siracusano, from the School of Art in Geneva. Musical entertainment will be provided by the Mariachi Institute of Chicago. A silent auction will be held offering artwork, gift baskets and gift certificates. El Molcajete will provide appetizers and refreshments during the event.

Tickets are only $10 online or $15 at the door.

We're looking forward to seeing you on Oct 21. Please buy your tickets now. It will definitely be an event to remember!

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Art & Music Night hosted by AAFH at RMH near Advocate Hospital

The Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH) sponsored an Art and Music Night at the Ronald McDonald House near Advocate Children’s Hospital in Oak Lawn, IL on Monday, September 10th.  We also donated various Alyssa Starter Art Kits while there with delivery of an assortment of kits made to the House Manager -Jenna Embree.

Each time we do an Art and Music Night we have a different experience which is part of what makes them so enjoyable.  We try to utilize different mediums – paints, crayons, colored pencils – and different themes – holidays, seasons, etc.  Sometimes we have multi-generation participation and sometimes, like this evening, we have multi-sibling participation. 

On Monday, we were joined by Angel (8 years old), Anthony (4 years old), Cruz (11 years old), Lana (6 years old) and Ian (1 year-old) in cutting out colored foam paper to glue on to a background with a Halloween theme.  The children were also given a coloring sheet with art crayons which they were allowed to keep for their own home use.  Additionally, each of the participants were able to select their own Alyssa Starter Art Kit.  Their father told us how appreciative he was that his children had a creative activity to occupy them while their newborn sister faced heart surgery at Advocate Children’s hospital.  It was clear that the kids had a wonderful time drawing, cutting and even creating Halloween masks.

Alyssa’s life and love of the arts continues to bring joy to young patients and their families.  We are so happy to carry on Alyssa’s legacy and so grateful to those who share our vision and support our Foundation!

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Alyssa Starter Art Kits for Central DuPage Hospital - Pediatrics Unit

Linda Fox (Volunteer) and Yoli Alvin (President of the Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope) made a delivery of 25 Alyssa Starter Art Kits to Ginger Manzella (Child Life Specialist at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago/Northwestern Medicine at Central DuPage Hospital on Wednesday, September 5, 2018.  Ginger is one of the Child Life staff members of the Pediatrics unit that we have worked with in the past and it was great to see her again. 

We have made previous deliveries of Alyssa SAKs to Central DuPage Hospital and it is great to know that we are sharing Alyssa’s love of art with the children being treated there.  Ginger said, “We only have one color-me lunch bag left and need more to pass out.”  The art kits are given to teens and young adult patients with cancer or other life-threatening illnesses.

We thank our volunteers who often assist preparing the Alyssa Starter Art Kits and our donors.  They make this all possible by providing the young patients the opportunity to express their creativity and experience a bit of joy during their medical journey. 

Alyssa’s legacy lives on! 

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AAFH Surprises Maria with Art Materials at Lurie Children’s Hospital

Maria Olvera is 13 years old and lives on the north side of Chicago with her family.  She is about to begin her 8th grade school year at Northwest Middle School.  Maria was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in the spring of 2015 and has been treated at Lurie’s for the past 3 years.

Yoli, President of the Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH) and Alyssa’s mom, arrived very early on August 31st at Lurie Children’s Hospital to meet with Maria and her mom, Dolores, and sister, Charlene. 

Maria spends time with the hospital’s Art Therapist, Willow Messier, when she is at Lurie’s for her treatments.  Willow shared information about AAFH with Maria and she went on our website to submit her gift request on August 16.  She asked for paint supplies, art pencils, markers, clay and clay tools – all of which we were pleased to obtain for her.  Maria’s other interests include taking care of people and would like to study medicine and become a doctor to help sick children.

While at Lurie's we saw that Alyssa's Geisha Collage continues to be displayed at the hospital.  The Collage has been moved to another hallway on the 11th floor, however, this area is not accessible to the general public and can only be seen by hospital staff.  Laura Shreffler, an RN and inpatient Asthma Educator at Lurie's showed us the new location of Alyssa's Geisha Collage and we were able to capture a few photos! 

The work of AAFH, made possible by our financial supporters and volunteers, means so much to the young cancer patients.  Our gift giving and art programs help to lift their spirits and bring them joy at a time in their lives when they’re facing life-threatening illnesses. 

We are grateful for the opportunity to share Alyssa’s love of art and promote the programs offered by Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope!  We wish Maria all the best as she continues with her treatment and begins her school year!

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Alyssa Starter Art Kits Donated to Northwestern Cancer Center in Chicago

Alyssa Starter Art Kits (SAKs) were delivered to Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University on Monday, August 27, 2018 by Marina Alfaro – AAFH volunteer and Yoli Alvin – AAFH President.  A total of 50 Alyssa Starter Art Kits were received by Stacy Stanford, a Clinical Psychologist at Northwestern University Hospital.  A variety of kits were donated such as color-me lunch bags, drawing materials, watercolors, acrylics, journals and adult coloring books.

The Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope provides outlets for creative expression through art and music for young patients dealing with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses. 

We are grateful for the opportunity to share Alyssa’s love of art and promote the programs offered by Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope!

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Paris Smiles Upon Receiving Her Art Materials Gift from AAFH

The Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH) met Paris on the 2nd floor of Lurie Children’s Hospital before her scheduled appointment on Tuesday, August 28, 2018.  Paris is 12 years old, lives on the north side of Chicago with her family and is about to begin 6th grade this school year.  Two years ago, Paris was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. 

Paris likes to draw, paint and build things with clay.  She works with the hospital’s Art Therapist, Willow Messier, when she is at Lurie for her treatments.  Willow told Paris about AAFH and had her submit a gift request.  Paris asked for and received a variety of paints, paint brushes and wells, acrylic/watercolor paper, magic modern clay and clay tools.   Paris is a happy girl with the desire to continue drawing, painting and creating with her clay materials.

It means so much to be able to honor the requests of young cancer patients because we strive to lift their spirits and provide a creative outlet for them to continue enjoying life while facing life-threatening illnesses. 

We remember Alyssa’s passions for art and music and the healing power of creativity and self-expression during this challenging period of their life.  We wish Paris all the best and good luck with her treatment and school year!

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Art/Music Night at RMH near Loyola Hospital in Maywood, IL

The Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH) sponsored an Art and Music Night at the Ronald McDonald House near Loyola Hospital in Maywood on Wednesday, August 22, 2018. 

The evening began with the art portion activity and included several families from as far as West Africa and the Bahamas.  Other families were from the surrounding Chicago area.  All the families participated in drawing with water-soluble crayons.  The vibrant colors and creativity generated a lot of positive interactions and many smiles from patients and parents alike. 

A young teen patient from the Bahamas spent a lot of time talking with Mary Jane Johnson – AAFH board member.  She was accompanied by her older sister and mom who were staying with her at the RMH.  The young teen told Mary Jane she took piano lessons and enjoys playing for her friends.  She is looking forward to entering the 7th grade in this coming school year. 

The evening concluded with everyone having a chance to try different percussion instruments including bongos, tambourines, maracas, music sticks and more. 

Alyssa’s life and love of the arts continues to bring joy to young patients and their families.  We are very grateful to Judy Goral for donating the many art materials used for this Art Night.  Thank you for your support of Alyssa’s Foundation!

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Gunner Received Electric Guitar and Alyssa SAK's Delivered In Orlando, Florida

On a warm and sunny day in Orlando, FL on August 16, 2018, Yoli-AAFH President and George-AAFH Vice President had the pleasure of meeting with Gunner Zickefoose, Gunner’s Mom, Marla, and the Ronald McDonald House (RMH) Manager, Sierra Reed.  The reason for our visit was to deliver Gunner’s gift request of an electric guitar and a variety of Alyssa starter art kits (SAKs) to the RMH.

Upon arriving at the RMH across from the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children, we were warmly greeted by Sierra.  She expressed her gratitude on behalf of the RMH for the Alyssa SAKs being delivered for the benefit of all the children and families staying at the RMH.  We spent a few moments discussing the AAFH’s mission and our intention to build a relationship with this RMH location.

Shortly afterward, Gunner and his Mom walked into the RMH and we exchanged greetings.  Gunner had just completed a medical procedure at the Arnold Palmer Hospital before coming to the RMH to meet us.  Gunner is an 11-year-old from Titusville, FL who was originally diagnosed with leukemia 4 years ago, but unfortunately relapsed in June 2018.  Gunner plays the bass guitar at school however due to his relapse will be home schooled for the coming school year.  Now that Gunner will have an electric guitar at his home he will be able to continue his love of playing music.  As any typical boy of his age, Gunner also loves playing video games on his Xbox One and playing with Legos.

It was very gratifying to see Gunner’s expression and happy demeanor when he realized we were there with his Fender Stratocaster electric guitar and amp.  Marla told us she had not told Gunner why they were stopping at the RMH since she wanted to surprise him.  It worked!

This is one delivery we will always recall warmly for being able to meet with Gunner and to see the joyful difference we made in his life that day.  We wish Gunner and Marla hope and strength to help them overcome this terrible illness.  Our prayers are with them.

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2018 Golf Event to Benefit AAFH Music & Art Programs

Held a golf and dinner event at the Itasca Country Club on Monday, August 13, 2018 to benefit the Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH).

Several foursomes enjoyed a sunny day playing 18 holes on a beautiful private course made available to us through the efforts of Michael Munro, a friend and supporter of the AAFH.  After the 18 holes of golf, additional supporters joined us for a delicious dinner along with the awarding of prizes and a raffle of goodies.  During the dinner, prizes and raffle, we all enjoyed jazz music provided by the talented musicians of the Metea Valley Jazz Combo.

In addition to the musician volunteers, there were many others who donated to our cause.  Several business entities acted as golf hole sponsors on the course including:  Attorney John O’Halloran, the Organization of Latinos at Exelon (OLE) and Dan Carrocci of Creative Staffing.  Michael Munro donated many golf prizes himself as well as representing his new restaurant venture, Green Street Grille in Bensenville, IL.  Nancy Nunez, Alyssa’s Godmother, and The Exchange Club of St. Charles also each purchased a foursome.  Exelon Corporation and TekSystems employees also donated and participated in our golf outing. 

Additionally, Daniel Guerrero, Alyssa’s cousin, and Chris Coconate, a longtime family friend, volunteered their time and talent in making the afternoon and evening a success.

We were also fortunate to receive our new banner with Alyssa’s picture just in time for this event.  The banner was displayed at the front and center of the room symbolic of Alyssa’s ongoing presence in our lives and the efforts we make for young people with similar health challenges.

A heartfelt thank you to all who attended the 2018 golf benefit, the board members and the volunteers who always give so much of their time, love and support.  A special thank you to Mike for coordinating another wonderful event! 

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Art Materials Gift for Angel near Chicago’s Southwest Side

A delivery to the home of Angel Nunez, 14 years old, in the neighborhood of Brighton Park in Chicago was made by Daniel Guerrero, Alyssa’s cousin.  Daniel went to the apartment Angel shares with his mother and siblings on Thursday, August 9, 2018.

Angel is being treated for osteosarcoma at Lurie Children’s Hospital and preparing to begin 8th grade.  Besides a love of painting, Angel also enjoys video games as well as playing board games with his family.  Angel is challenged getting around on crutches and going through his treatments for his illness, but he was grateful to receive his painting and drawing materials.

Visiting young patients and their families, whether in medical facilities or in their homes, reminds us of how important these relatively small gifts can be in lifting up their spirits.  We remember Alyssa’s creative passions for art and music and how that provided welcome outlets during difficult times.  We wish Angel all the best in his recovery and his final year in grade school!

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AbilityLab Receives Alyssa Starter Art Kits

A delivery of 50 Alyssa Starter Art Kits (SAKs) was made to the Shirley Ryan Ability Lab in Chicago, IL on Sunday, August 5, 2018 by two of Alyssa’s cousins -Alexis and Daniel Guerrero.

Alexis & Daniel met the Music & Art Therapy Team:  Mike Wehner -Manager of Therapy Recreation at AbilityLab, Wills McKenna -Music Therapist and Lynne Linkowski & Erin Blanchette with Art Therapy.  AbilityLab has a floor dedicated to Oncology patients and will make sure they promote our Gift Recipient Program to those young adult patients.  Each day they work with young patients who are interested in expressing themselves through music and art. 

Everyone liked the variety of Alyssa SAKs which included 7 types of kits: acrylic, watercolor, pencil case, drawing, journals, color-me lunch bags, and adult coloring books.

The Alyssa SAKs will be available for teens and young adults between the ages of 10 and 21 staying at the AbilityLab.   

Alexis and Daniel enjoyed being part of this delivery because of the opportunity it gave them to share Alyssa’s love of art and promote the programs offered by Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope!

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Tristan Receives His Electric Guitar

Tristan Ballinger is an 18-year-old young man from LaGrange, Kentucky who has a severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) and is being treated at Shirley Ryan Ability Lab in downtown Chicago.  Daniel Guerrero, Alyssa’s cousin, met Tristan and his parents, Nicole and Mike, on Tuesday, July 31st to deliver the electric guitar.

Tristan heard about the Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH) when he participated in Alyssa’s Celebration of Life held at RMH Chicago on Sunday, July 22, 2018.  Tristan shared with us that before his injury, he played 2 sports – wrestling and baseball.  He also spent time hunting on weekends and enjoyed music very much.  Tristan said that when he was young, he attended a rock band summer camp and learned to play the song, Smoke on the Water, on the piano.  Tristan also said he had an interest in music back in middle school and signed up for Band where he played the trumpet. 

Tristan was excited to submit a request through AAFH and asked for an electric guitar, one of his favorite instruments.  He is looking forward to learning how to play his guitar while singing and wants to be able to make up his own songs and perform them.

The Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope’s goal is to inspire teens and young adults to be creative and give them hope to continue living life to its fullest. 

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Delicious Italian Food & Jazz Music to Celebrate Alyssa’s 23rd Birthday

On Sunday, July 22nd the Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH) held a special Italian meal for the resident families and our guests at RMH in Chicago to celebrate Alyssa’s Life!  The lunch included a performance by the Matea Valley Jazz Combo.

Daniel Guerrero, Alyssa’s cousin, hosted and gathered a group of his friends - Mario DiCarlo, Mario Castagna, Marissa Castagna, Jennifer Bertucci, Krysta Rojas and Kristina Juarez generously volunteered to purchase the ingredients and prepare the Italian meal which consisted of salad, pasta, meatballs, sausage and peppers as well as cupcakes.  Alyssa’s Godmother, Nancy Avila, surprised us by bringing a delicious carrot cake donated by Susie Avila, her sister-in-law. 

Daniel, a lineman for the Chicago Transit Authority with IBEW Local 9, was joined by his good friend Jonathon Burkhard who is also a Local 9 Lineman and his father, IBEW Local 9 Business Manager, Mr. John Burkhard.  We are very appreciate of the generous donations from the IBEW LOCAL 9 Chicago Office and from Jonathan and his family. 

Seven members of the Matea Valley Jazz Combo volunteered to play for Alyssa’s celebration: Cara Neidenbach (trumpet), Ben Doyle (drums), Crystal Adaya (Saxophone), Claire Baranyk (Tenor Saxophone), Nick (Bass), Neel Surti (guitar) and Emily Hensley (piano).  Their performance included a variety of jazz standards with solos by many of the band members.

After lunch, the combo played and sang the Happy Birthday song for Alyssa and it brought a lot of joy and happiness of the beautiful memories we have of Alyssa.  We then went up to the rooftop where Denise Perez-Cabrera, AAFH Executive Secretary, gave a heartfelt blessing before Alyssa’s family and friends released 23 red balloons into the sky.   

Special, erasable lunch bags with crayons were given to the children as a gift and everyone enjoyed Alyssa’s birthday cake and delicious cupcakes.

We thank the volunteers who prepared the wonderful Italian meal and desserts, the musicians, the RMH staff and our guests for coming out to the RMH in Chicago and participating in this special celebration of Alyssa’s life.  The RMH near Lurie’s was and is a special place for the Alvin family. 

Our mission is to continue sharing Alyssa’s love of music and art with as many young patients undergoing treatment to combat life threatening illnesses.  We wish to bring them a bit of Joy and Hope.  This summer, with everyone’s help, we have certainly done just that!

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Alyssa SAKs Delivered to Riley Hospital in Indianapolis, IN

Bella-AAFH Gift Recipient and Tasha-her mom, joined Yoli-President of Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope to deliver Alyssa Starter Art Kits (SAKs) to Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis, IN on Thursday, July 19, 2018.   The three of them met with Ann Hannan, Director of Riley Cheer Guild and Music Therapy at the hospital.  It was a great occasion by having Bella volunteer her time to participate in the delivery of the SAKs.  Riley Hospital for Children is where Bella is currently being treated for her brain tumor.

Tasha checks in with us regularly and it was a pleasure to see them both smiling and happy despite the ongoing treatments Bella continues to endure.

Ann was very happy to receive a variety of Alyssa SAKs and is looking forward to distributing them to the various hospital music and art therapy staff as well as the social workers who work with the children in the hospital.   

Our mission is to share Alyssa’s love of art and bring Joy and Hope to young patients by giving them the opportunity to experience different art mediums like watercolors, acrylics, drawing, coloring and journaling.

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Smiling Faces in Guadalajara, Mexico

This summer, 9 young adult oncology patients received musical gifts from Dra. Martha Juarez and Dra. Alma from Fray Antonio Alcalde Hospitals of Guadalajara, Mexico.

These young adult cancer patients live in the surrounding areas of Jalisco and travel for hours to receive medical treatment at Fray Antonio Alcalde Hospitals.  These recipients all expressed their thankfulness and love to the Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope and said, "muchisimas gracias de todo corazon".

Jose de Jesus Gillen Garcia (18) years of age with his new blue headset, Jose Beltran Salas (20) years of age with his new guitar, Ingrid Naomi (16) years of age with her new violin,  Erick Arath (18) years of age with his guitar, Victor Felipe (14) years of age with his xylophone, Cristopher Giovani (14) years of age with his acrylic art kit, Luis Angel Robledo Alvarado (20) years of age with his red ukulele, Hector Fernando Chavez Sanchez (17) years of age with his art kit and Brandon Jared Antimo Salazar (21) years of age received a new blue headset.

Thank you to Dra. Martha and Dra. Alma for promoting Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope to the teens and young adult patients being treated for various cancers at Fray Antonio Alcalde Hospitals in Guadalajara, Mexico.

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Art and Music Night at RMH near Loyola University Medical Center

The Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH) sponsored an Art and Music Night at the Ronald McDonald House near Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, IL on Monday, July 9th.  While there, we also delivered to House Manager -Kelly Evans an assortment of Alyssa Starter Art Kits for the enjoyment of all children and their families staying at the RMH.

The evening began with the art portion and we had 3 families participating in creating paintings, drawing with pastels and cutting colorful sheets of foam into different shapes and objects.  The vibrant colors and creativity generated a lot of smiles for patients and parents alike.

Andrew (known as “Drew”), 12 years old, and his Aunt, Anna are from Pontiac, MI and were staying at the RMH for Drew’s upcoming surgery.  Drew plays a couple of musical instruments – viola and piano - and is interested in fishing and auto mechanics. 

Clara, 7 years old, and her parents are from Reed, MI and were also awaiting her surgery.  Clara had a wonderful time creating her own art piece and working with her Mom and Dad on another project.

Noah, 3 years old, and his Mom, Ivona, from Toronto, Canada also participated in some finger painting.  We had met Noah and his family on a previous visit and were happy to get re-acquainted.

The evening concluded with everyone having a chance to try different percussion instruments including bongos, tambourine, maracas and more.  Each of the participants were also able to take home their own Alyssa Starter Art Kit.

Alyssa’s life and love of the arts continues to bring joy to young patients and their families.  We are so happy to carry on her legacy and so grateful to those who share our vision and support Alyssa’s Foundation!

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Art Comes to RMH East in St. Petersburg, Florida

Children and families from Bolivia, Brazil, Grand Bahama, Republic of Georgia, Ohio and surrounding areas of Florida participated in an afternoon of art activities at the Ronald McDonald House near All Children’s Hospital Johns Hopkins in St. Petersburg on Tuesday, July 3, 2018. 

Kellie Wilson-AAFH Volunteer and friend of the Alvin family accompanied George and Yoli Alvin – founders of Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope to host art activities where the children and their family members could have fun drawing with oil pastels, scrapbooking, and stenciling.

Kellie met Alex-a 5-year-old and his grandma from the Republic of Georgia.  While Alex’s parents were with his 2-week-old baby brother being treated at All Children’s Hospital, Kellie was able to make Alex feel better and enjoy a variety of art activities. 

Pablo - an 8-year-old and his mom-Elizabeth (Ely) from Bolivia, were excited for the opportunity to draw and color with us. 

A young 16-year-old girl- DaShanya and her brother-Darrol a 12-year-old from Grand Bahama were smiling and very happy doing their art.  DaShanya expressed that “this is the most fun I’ve had while being at the Ronald McDonald house”!

Joao Pedro a 5-year-old and his mom-Claudia from Sao Paulo, Brazil were happy be a part of this art event.  Claudia drew a “Tree of Hope” and gave her finished artwork as a gift to the AAFH.  Claudia said to Yoli, “it was a pleasure to meet you and for doing what you do for our children and us”.

It is always a beautiful experience to watch the happiness our activities bring to the young patients and their families.  Kellie and Yoli encouraged and praised the efforts of the artists while everyone enjoyed themselves and all the children received their own Alyssa Starter Art Kit.

Special thanks to the RMH East staff for allowing us to hold another Art event and accepting a donation of Alyssa Starter Art Kits for all to enjoy during their stay at RMH East.  We also delivered Alyssa Starter Art Kits to Teresa - Child Life staff from All Children's Hospital Johns. Hopkins

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Beauty Bash Charity @ Benefit San Francisco - Chicago

Amanda (Mandy) Luebbers – Boutique proprietor of Benefit San Francisco in Chicago, Illinois, sponsored a Beauty Bash party to benefit Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope on Thursday, June 21, 2018. 

Rita Alviar, an AAFH volunteer and long-time friend of Yoli’s, planned and organized the party to raise funds to honor the request of our next gift recipient.  The ladies enjoyed BBQ riblets, Cuban sandwiches, chicken parmesan sliders and white cheddar mac-n-cheese provided by Anthony Mata of the Silver Palm Restaurant along with the wine provided by Mandy.  The ladies received cosmetic services, makeovers and made product purchases as well.  We thank the staff at Benefit San Francisco for making us feel so beautiful and to Anthony for donating the yummy appetizers!

The proceeds from this event will directly provide a young patient with cancer or facing a life-threatening disease to take advantage of our music or art program .  Depending on the young patient’s interests, we offer either a musical instrument or art materials with a value of up to $250. 

Everyone had a great time and we can’t wait to do this again for this great cause!

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Rush University Children’s Hospital Gets Alyssa SAKs

Megan and Kari – Child Life Specialists at Rush University Children’s Hospital (Rush) received Alyssa Starter Art Kits (SAKs) from Carmen Ziegler – AAFH Board Member and Yoli Alvin – President of AAFH.  We also met Molly Rose Elkins-Ryan who is a Sr. Residency Coordinator of the Medicine/Pediatrics unit at Rush University Medical Center.  Molly escorted us to the Child Life area and it was great to see Megan again and meet Kari and Molly.

Carmen has made previous deliveries of Alyssa Starter Art Kits to Rush and it feels good to share Alyssa’s love of art with the children at Rush.  Megan said, “perfect timing as we ran out of the Alyssa SAKs and needed more to pass out.”  The art kits will be given to teens and young adult patients with cancer and/or other life-threatening illnesses being treated at Rush.

We thank our donors for making it possible to continue preparing Alyssa Starter Art Kits and allow the young patients the opportunity to be creative during their medical journey. 

Alyssa’s legacy lives on! 

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Art & Music Night at RMH near Comer Children’s Hospital

The Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH) sponsored an Art and Music Night at the Ronald McDonald House near Comer Children’s Hospital in Chicago on Monday, June 11th.  We also donated Alyssa Starter Art Kits while there with delivery of an assortment of kits made to the House Director, Mardell Gundlach.

The Art and Music Nights held at the RMHs are for patients and their family members of any and all ages and, once again, we had a mother and daughter participate in painting picture frames.

Gabby (short for Gabriela), 7 years old, and her Mom, Natasha, are from South Bend, IN and staying at the RMH for Gabby’s treatments and tests.  Gabby’s health condition forced her to miss participation with her class for 1st grade but she hopes to re-join her class in the fall after being home-schooled the past year.  Gabby and Tasha had a wonderful time painting, talking and using their creative talents.

Alyssa’s memory carries on and touches people every day when we host one of our events.  As supporters of AAFH, you can see the joy that is brought to these families during troubling times in their lives.

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