Jacksonville rallies to support local families on Nemours’ annual Day of Giving

$108,755 raised during Monday’s phone bank

Third Annual Nemours day of giving
Third Annual Nemours day of giving

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – News4Jax viewers and other donors smashed through Nemours Children’s Health System’s fundraising goal during its 3rd Annual Day of Giving.

Monday’s phone bank began with a goal to raise $75,000. Through the generosity of the community, the goal was raised to $100,000 by afternoon. When the phone bank wrapped at 7 p.m, $108,755 had been pledged to fund patient care and programs that are not covered by health insurance.

In addition, the annual fundraiser also benefits patient and family support funds as well as research. Nemours serves 84,000 children each year.

While the phone bank ended, you can still make donations by going to Nemours.org/dayofgiving.

Throughout the Day of Giving, viewers met several patient ambassadors who have greatly benefitted from the care and support they have received at Nemours throughout their childhood.

Three of the Nemours patients profiled during Monday's Day of Giving: Kwaseem Scruggs, Hadley Odom and brothers Noah and Rowan Smith. (Nemours)

For example, Nemours connected Kwaseem Scruggs and his family to sickle cell anemia support groups and other community resources like a special camp to help him face the challenges of sickle cell. In fact, the 18-year-old plans to return to camp as a volunteer this year.

Toddler Hadley Odom has a rare condition called micrognathia, a lower jaw much smaller than the rest of her face. She has received care from numerous specialists at the Nemours Health System.

Hadley’s parents said, if they lived anywhere else, they would move to Jacksonville to have access to the care and support their daughter receives now. They wouldn’t trust her care to anyone else.

Brothers Noah and Rowan Smith both have muscular dystrophy. The teenagers are well-known and loved by the staff at Nemours.

“The boys have every specialist you can imagine,” said Noah and Rowan’s mother, Dana Smith.

The Smiths shared their story with Channel 4 viewers to help raise money and give back to Nemours in appreciation of everything Nemours has done for them.

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“A not-for-profit organization, Nemours Children’s Health System covers roughly $24 million each year in medical services for children who are uninsured or underinsured,” said Maggie Hightower, director of fund development for Nemours. “With our 3rd Annual Day of Giving, Nemours hopes to raise funds to benefit patient and family support funds for the neediest in our community, as well as research.”

To learn more or donate, visit Nemours’ Day of Giving page.

Aside from being a leading provider of specialized care for young patients, Nemours has been supportive of the community response to the pandemic, including COVID-19 testing, flexible options for virtual care and patient advice regarding schools, masking and vaccines.