Women for Riley: Helping Kids through Grants and Generosity

W4R group photo 2020 full

The philanthropic group Women for Riley has granted $138,100 to more than a dozen programs at Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health. The programs selected as this year’s grant recipients provide care, comfort, education, and special needs assistance for patients and families. The Women for Riley grants program has provided $1.3 million dollars to Riley programs in the past 11 years.

Among the programs receiving funding this year:

Safe Sleep Pack ‘N Play kits 

These kits provide a portable play crib with tight fitting sheets and a sleep sack designed to prevent accidental suffocation. Indiana ranks 43rd in the nation in infant mortality, with accidental suffocation in bed accounting for a large percentage of cases of Sudden Unexpected Infant Death. The state of Indiana no longer provides funding for this initiative.

Healing Hands Massage Therapy for Patients 

This service provides massage therapy to cancer patients to increase their coping skills and sense of well-being, while decreasing anxiety, pain and discomfort.

Language of Love: Reach Out and Read 

This program creates a language-rich environment to optimize infant neurodevelopment and family-centered care for infants in the Riley Newborn Intensive Care Unit. Parents learn how talking, singing and reading to their babies can increase early brain development and reduce stress levels.

Other valuable and essential programs that received 2020 Women for Riley grants include: STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) educational tools for patients; mobility and movement supplies for Pediatric Intensive Care Unit patients; pre-surgery care for patients with autism; and exercise resources for patients with Cystic Fibrosis.

The two-month-long selection process involves around 20 Women for Riley members. Amanda Ross has been a member of Women for Riley for six years and has seen the results provided by previous grant recipients. “I love how passionate the Riley staff is about their projects. They go above and beyond to make the lives of their patients better,” says Amanda. “I love how we are filling a need that other organizations can’t or don’t, with such a high impact on patients and staff.”

Women for Riley is a philanthropic group within Riley Children’s Foundation. This organization is made up of women who are committed to making a difference in the lives of Riley patients and families by making annual gifts and volunteering their talents. In addition to giving back through grants and volunteering at Riley Hospital, Women for Riley members coordinate the annual Riley Cancer Center Family Prom. To learn more, visit RileyKids.org/WomenForRiley or contact Pamela Fairchild-Clark at PFairchild-Clark@RileyKids.org.

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