As the SickKids Hospital website states, “Where they live shouldn’t determine if they live.”
Many children around the world require specialized surgery to save their lives but don’t have access to it. In response to this, SickKids, the world’s second-largest hospital-based paediatric research facility following Boston Children’s Hospital, has developed a fund to raise money to help change this.
The Herbie Fund, which is currently seeking support, enables approximately 30 children from around the world to receive life-saving medical care, in SickKids’ Toronto, Canada facilities.
The fund first began with Herbie Quinones of Brooklyn, New York, back in the 1970s.
According to the SickKids website, Herbie was born with a rare birth deficit that made it difficult for him to breathe, and needed a unique operation that was only available at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.
SickKids surgeons offered to perform the surgery for free but Herbie’s family could not afford to pay the additional hospital costs.
And so, some heart-warming members of the general public decided to help out. Paul and Gina Godfrey read about Herbie’s ordeal in the newspaper and decided to raise money.
The couple spread the word and gathered numerous donations from friends and corporations to cover the hospital costs, allowing baby Herbie to received his life-saving operation at just 7 months of age.
The Herbie Fund now helps save over 30 lives of children from around the world, each year.
How does it work? As with Herbie’s original case, physicians at SickKids donate their time and expertise to provide life-saving surgery for free to selected children.
The number of cases doctors can help each year depends upon the level of money raised by the Herbie Fund annually, but to date upwards of 777 kids from 106 countries worldwide have benefited from the open-handed initiative.
It was founded in 1875, reportedly inspired by the Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, England.
To donate and help change a child’s life, click here.