Updated: Dec 29, 2019
ST. CHARLES– January has rolled by, and New Year’s resolutions have been made that you may or may not have begun. Chances are your resolutions include activities that will improve your health, your finances, and your overall happiness. I have always found another element of happiness is giving to others, whether it is financial assistance to those in need or volunteering your time and talents to a cause or community. In this new column, I hope to inspire ideas for giving back by showcasing different charities and causes and their activities. Perhaps one will strike a chord within you. Since it is close to Valentine’s Day, I’d like to start with a cause that’s close to my heart, Cal’s Angels out of St. Charles.
Cal’s Angels was established in 2007 in memory of Cal Sutter, a 12-year old who lost his 14 ½ month battle with Leukemia. The organization has a mission of granting wishes, raising awareness and funding research to help kids fighting cancer at Chicagoland hospitals. “After the loss of our son, our community surrounded us with love and support,” says Stacey Sutter, Cal’s Angels President. “It is important to us to give back to the community that gave so much to us.”
To date, the foundation has given hope and support to more than 900 pediatric cancer patients and their families as well as granted 1,037 wishes. A wish can be anything from a laptop to help with homework, backyard playsets, or tickets to their favorite sports team. The list of wishes is endless. Each family receives a wish and/or financial assistance up to $1000.
Cal’s Angels doesn’t stop at wishes, though. Each year, they host 14 pizza parties on the oncology floors at Lurie Children’s Hospital where the children get to pick out toys (for their siblings, too) courtesy of the many toy drives run by the foundation. “The parties give families and children something to look forward to during a day of treatment,” explains Stacey. The foundation continues the fun at the holidays with a Fantasy Flight to the North Pole and attempts to relieve the burden of holiday shopping through their 12 Days of Christmas program where volunteers help shop, wrap and deliver gifts.
For more information on their many events and volunteer opportunities, you can visit www.calsangels.org.
Mindy's February Giving Inspiration: For this Valentine’s Day, give a single flower to someone that touches your life and would not expect it – the pharmacist, your hair dresser, the Starbucks barista……