Hospitalized Children Benefit from Spirit Halloween’s Significant Gift to Child Life Program at K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital

February 18, 2021

For the seventh consecutive year, Spirit Halloween has provided a significant grant to Hackensack Meridian Children’s Health at K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital, located at Hackensack Meridian Jersey Shore University Medical Center. The recent gift, provided through the Spirit of Children program, represents collections during the 2020 Halloween season and totaled $85,562, bringing the organization’s overall donations to more than $366,000.

“Our partnership with Spirit Halloween is incredibly special,” says Joyce P. Hendricks, president and chief development officer, Hackensack Meridian Health Foundation. “Their dedication to improving the hospital experience for children is truly heartwarming and we are so grateful for their support, particularly as it helps to fund our child life team, which plays an invaluable role in a hospitalized child’s care. I’d also like to express my gratitude to the community, who made more donations this year than ever before – despite the pandemic. We are so thankful to everyone who participated in the Spirit of Children program, and to Spirit Halloween for their continued dedication to our team and children.”

The funds distributed to partner hospitals such as K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital will be used to provide fun and funding for hospitalized children throughout the year. Additionally, the resources will enable K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital to bring added child life support to the medical center’s surgical and emergency departments.

“Children who are about to undergo a surgical procedure, or who are coming into the hospital for an emergent situation, are usually very frightened,” says Harpreet Pall, M.D., professor and chairman, department of pediatrics, K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital. “To be able to add the child life team, who will be there to walk the child through what is happening, intervene with distraction techniques, support their emotional needs to reduce stress and anxiety and serve as a resource for frightened family members is so important. We are thankful to Spirit Halloween and the community for recognizing the value of this program and for continuing to help us advance care and support for sick children.”

As part of the Spirit of Children program, Spirit Halloween stores in the local area conducted in-store fundraising campaigns specifically to benefit the Child Life Program at K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital. In addition to collecting in-store donations, when customers utilized Spirit Halloween’s 10-for-10 coupon, they received 10 percent off their purchase and Spirit Halloween matched every coupon purchase with a 10 percent donation. Participating 2020 stores included the following locations: Brick, Freehold, Howell, Holmdel, Manalapan, Tinton Falls, two Toms River locations, Wall Township and West Long Branch.

“It is gratifying to be able to partner with K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital,” says Richard Tereo, team lead, Spirit of Children and director, corporate administration for Spencer Spirit Holdings, Inc. “This year, we were able to support Child Life Services at 147 partner hospitals throughout the United States and Canada, providing them with costumes and treats to help children celebrate Halloween, and of course, funding to help their child life departments deliver children the special care they need during a difficult time. We were honored to be able to support the children’s hospital and look forward to a continued successful partnership for the 2021 season.”

To support the Child Life program at K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital, please visit give.hackensackmeridianhealth.org/KHCH or call Ellen Hahn, development officer for Hackensack Meridian Children’s Health.