Minnesota team makes a creative connection at Minneapolis Children’s Hospital

Giving back is a year-round focus at Safelite, and we all work together to bring Nationally Powered strength to good causes with Locally Driven spirit. Often that means that a cause near and dear to one of us gains momentum, leading to a ripple effect as teams all across the country get involved.

Such has been the case ever since Safelite Solutions Vice President Client Sales & Support Gary Strain began making calls to enlist support for The Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation. Named for a family friend’s daughter who lost her battle with cancer at the tender age of 17, the Foundation was created by her parents, Mario and Gisele DiNatale, to provide hospitalized teens with a creative outlet to brighten long days.

One of the ways they accomplish that is through the Alicia’s Art Cart program. Built by volunteers and filled with a wide array of art supplies, the carts are donated to hospitals in communities throughout the country.

Thanks to a partnership with Safelite, yet another cart has been delivered—this time to Minneapolis Children’s Hospital—with a little help from District Manager Geoff Brubaker and his team.

“When Gary contacted me about the program, I realized that it would be a wonderful thing to do,” Geoff said. “So I ran the idea past the team, and there was no hesitation—we were all in! Anytime you hear about kids going through the challenges these teens are facing, you look inward. If you can change their day in a positive way, you have to get involved!”

Three leaders stepped up immediately to volunteer their services in building the cart and adding the finishing touches: Tony Brown – Quality Manager; Phil Dosse – Market Supply Chain Manager; Tom Wolf – Quality Manager.

“Putting the cart together was good for team building, too,” Geoff said. “Things went very smoothly, which was important to us. We wanted to make sure the work was done well, so the teens using the cart are pleased with it.”

Tony and Phil then joined Geoff on “reveal day” to tour the 7th floor oncology unit and present the cart in the hospital’s Minnesota Wild Teen Lounge.

They also had the opportunity to meet one of the patients who will benefit from the art cart during his visit with his mother. “She was very complimentary of the cart and the variety of activities it will provide for her son and other teens,” Geoff said. “She expressed her appreciation to all of us, sharing how nice it was that her son will have something like this available to create positive and happy memories while spending time in the hospital.”

Geoff and his team plan to continue their partnership going forward, and perhaps branch off into some other events as well. “We’re discussing helping with an upcoming Children’s Walk, and Children’s also has a Ronald McDonald facility onsite,” he said. “We already participate in ‘Cooks for Kids’ at another location, but we may end up doing that at Children’s next time. The team there is doing great things—it can be a tough job but they truly make a difference in people’s lives … not just for the teens, but for their family members as well.”

Yet Geoff and his team never lost sight of the extraordinary young lady whose legacy brought them there in the first place.

“I’m always humbled when we participate in community activities—it’s nice to know that what we did will make someone’s day a little brighter after we leave,” he said. “Thinking about Alicia and her parents—and what they went through—causes me to reflect on just how blessed we are overall. We have to make the best of every single day because we never know what tomorrow may present.”

For more information about Alicia’s Art Cart, visit www.victoriousfoundation.org/artcart.

Source article written and published by Safelite AutoGlass The Wire.

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About Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation

Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation (ARVF, Corp.) is a 501(c)3 non-profit charitable organization founded in 2002. ARVF is dedicated to providing age-appropriate Victorious 4 Teens programs, for hospitalized teens and young adults, battling cancer and other life-threatening illnesses. Since inception, over $2.5m has been dedicated to Victorious 4 Teens programs, including funding 65 Teen Lounges, located at children’s hospitals in 38 states across the country. ARVF also distributes over 2000 Teen Kits & Bandana Pillows annually to hospitalized teens and young adults. For more information about ARVF and to find out how you can help hospitalized teens, visit www.victoriousfoundation.org.


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