MILWAUKEE, April 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Imagine your child has been diagnosed with a devastating illness. If the best possibility for treatment is hundreds of miles away and requires a significant amount of time to administer, where would you stay during that time? Given the doctors, tests and hospital visits, how would you minimize the effects of this lifestyle change to your family?
Last year, Northwestern Mutual, in response to a lack of support for pediatric cancer research and services, launched its Childhood Cancer Program to raise awareness and money to fight childhood cancer. In continued support of this need, Northwestern Mutual, through its Foundation, has partnered with the Brewers Community Foundation to launch Stolen Bases, Happy Faces.
Throughout the 2013 major league baseball season, every Milwaukee Brewers stolen base at Miller Park will result in a $1,000 donation to Ronald McDonald House Charities Eastern Wisconsin to expand services for children and families fighting childhood cancer and other diseases. Thanks to Rickie Week's stolen base on opening day, the effort is off to a "fast" start.
"With the help of the Brewers Community Foundation, Northwestern Mutual hopes to make our town as nurturing as possible for the children and families seeking medical care in the Milwaukee area," said John Kordsmeier, president, Northwestern Mutual Foundation. "We're pleased Stolen Bases, Happy Faces will help support our local home away from home for families who need it."
The Stolen Bases, Happy Faces campaign marks the third year Northwestern Mutual and Brewers Community Foundation have collaborated. Brewers Community Foundation focuses its programming on youth and their families.
"My teammates and I are thrilled to rally around this program and help support children and families who are going through a tough time," said Carlos Gomez, centerfielder, Milwaukee Brewers. "Working together, we can raise awareness of the fight against pediatric cancer and offer hope for a cancer-free future."
Five-year old Issy, who has been battling cancer since he was 10 months old, will be featured in signage and game day programs throughout the campaign. A dedicated Brewers fan, Issy and his family have been frequent residents of the Ronald McDonald House in Wauwatosa, which has served 34,000 families since the doors opened in 1984. It currently has full occupancy with 38 guest rooms—often with a wait list of anywhere from 5 to 20 families each day.
"Ronald McDonald House Charities Eastern Wisconsin is grateful to Northwestern Mutual and the Brewers Community Foundation to be selected as the charity of choice for the Stolen Bases, Happy Faces campaign," said Ann Petrie, CEO, Ronald McDonald House Charities Eastern Wisconsin. "Last year we turned away over 600 families because of space constraints. These funds will support our expansion with a new study room – enabling us to realize our goal of not having to turn away families in need."
About the Northwestern Mutual Foundation The mission of the Northwestern Mutual Foundation – the largest corporate foundation in the state of Wisconsin – is to build strong, vibrant communities that serve as a legacy to future generations. The Foundation's giving is designed to create an impact on the communities where the company's employees and financial representatives live and work. In fiscal year 2013, the Foundation will contribute $16.9 million to nonprofit organizations across the country.
About Brewers Community Foundation Brewers Community Foundation harnesses the pride, passion and commitment of Brewers fans, players, and other supporters to positively impact the lives of children and their families in Greater Milwaukee and Wisconsin. Its vision is to be thoughtful, dependable, philanthropic leaders actively engaged in providing needed financial support and leadership consistent with its mission. Funding efforts are focused, and will strategically extend financial support to nonprofits that provide quality programming in the areas of health, education, recreation and basic needs, with a particular focus on low income and disadvantaged youth. Brewers Community Foundation along with player support has helped Ronald McDonald House build an art therapy room, play structure and Peace Garden over the past three (3) years.
About Ronald McDonald House Charities Eastern Wisconsin Ronald McDonald House Charities Eastern Wisconsin is dedicated to easing the burden of families whose lives have been disrupted as a result of their child's illness or injury. It is a home away from home for families of seriously ill or injured children. The Ronald McDonald House is more than a place to stay; it is place for families to flourish, to reach out to one another and offer comfort and support.