NDSU Center for Child Development collects toys for children undergoing chemotherapy
Published April 30, 2012
The NDSU Center for Child Development and Human Development and Family Science Club partnered with Fargo State Bank and Trust to collect new toys and comfort items, such as blankets, for children undergoing chemotherapy at Sanford Health’s Roger Maris Cancer Center, Pediatric Oncology.
The effort was part of the Spring 2012 Caring and Sharing Project that culminated April 24 when a Sanford oncology nurse visited the Center for Child Development to talk about how she helps children who are sick get better. The children also helped load the donations.
“The center staff believe that even young children can make a difference in the community by helping others,” said Debra Habedank, director of the Center for Child Development. “The children are experiencing that service firsthand, that giving and kindness to others has greater benefits than receiving. Our ultimate goal is to help develop caring adult citizens who give back to their community.”
Children who attend the Center for Child Development and 11 members of the Human Development and Family Science Club were each given $10 by Jeremy Neuharth, project manager at State Bank and Trust, through the Pay It Forward program. Families, teachers and club members then matched the $10 gift to buy the items. The children also decorated bags for the items and created get-well cards.
This is the second Caring and Sharing project Neuharth, a parent of a child at the Center for Child Development, has helped support with Pay It Forward funds. He said he appreciates the opportunity to teach children about the importance of giving. “And it’s fun,” he said.
Katie Koep, president of the Human Development and Family Science Club, said participating in the project was a good learning experience. Since she plans to work with children as a career, she said it was helpful to observe a project that aims to instill community service values at an early age. “It was fun to watch the kids and learn about services Sanford has,” she said. Koep is a senior majoring in human development and family science from Fergus Falls, Minn.
The idea to help children undergoing chemotherapy at Sanford came from a parent during a Parent Advisory Committee meeting.
Leading up to the service project, students from NDSU’s College of Pharmacy, Nursing, and Allied Sciences brought a program called The Great Health Care Adventure to the center. The program teaches children about health care careers in fun, interactive ways.