On Friday, April 12, upon arriving to Chicago from Guadalajara, Mexico, Dr. Martha Juarez-new Board member of Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope (AAFH) accompanied Yoli-AAFH President for a delivery of Alyssa Starter Art Kits (SAKs) to Willow Messier, Art Therapist at Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. Dr. Martha and Yoli were joined by Nayelly and Hugo, daughter and son, respectively, of Dr. Martha. Dr. Martha met Willow who was the Art Therapist who worked with Alyssa during her stay at Lurie’s and later assisted with identifying the supplies that should go into the SAKs. Willow took us to the Art/Music room on the 12th floor and showed us the musical instruments previously donated by the AAFH and Instrument Exchange.  The instruments are hung on the walls and are available to children who want to borrow them while in-patient at the hospital. Dr. Martha also had a chance to see Alyssa’s Geisha Collage on the wall of the 11th floor. Alyssa’s Geisha Collage reminds us of Alyssa’s strength as she completed this piece after coming out of a coma. Alyssa inspires all of us to continue working hard and enjoying life to its fullest.

The following Monday, April 15th, Dr. Martha, Nayelly and Hugo made a deliver of the Alyssa SAKs to Kari Batelson and Megan Hartnet, Child Life Specialists at Rush Children’s Hospital. Dr. Martha had the chance to see two of the local hospitals AAFH donates Alyssa SAKs to. She enjoyed meeting the Child Life staff and hopes to come again to assist in the art kit deliveries.

The Alyssa Alvin Foundation for Hope was created to give hope and provide outlets for creative expression through art and music for young patients dealing with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses. The photos shown here are demonstrations of the efforts many people have made to give hope whether it be the many instruments that have been donated to create a music room at the hospital or the beautiful Geisha art piece that Alyssa created during her own treatment. As you can see, Alyssa’s inspiration continues to bring our family, friends and others interested in helping people together in her memory.