This is not so with Harrisburg-based Caitlin’s Smiles, named after founder Cheryl Hornung’s late daughter, who passed away from cancer at the age of seven.
“In my estimation, she took what has to be one of the most devastating things that can happen to a person and has turned it into a tremendous act of service to families who find themselves in similar circumstances,” Pavone Marketing Group president Amy Beamer Murray, who sits on the Caitlin’s Smiles board, says in her nomination letter.
Caitlin’s Smiles provides arts and crafts to hospitalized children through volunteer efforts.
“For Caitlin, arts and crafts were a very positive distraction during her numerous hospital stays while she sought treatment,” Murray adds.
“Providing arts and crafts kits to hospitalized children seemed like a wonderful way to immortalize Caitlin and honor her memory.”
Since launching in 2004, the organization has donated over 2.2 million arts and craft supplies to children in area hospitals, medical facilities and medical camps.
“I smile every day thinking of all the children, their families and hospital staff that we have helped,” says Hornung. “I am truly blessed to have such wonderful volunteers and donors.”