Ethan & Choco's Book Club

Striving to make access to books and reading a core part of the care that SuperKids receive in the hospital, with the principal premise that literacy support for children fighting cancer and other life-threatening conditions can help promote cognitive development and social connections that are part of thriving through treatment and beyond


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Thank You BOOK IT! 2019 Book Drive Donors!

A HUGE thank you to everyone who brought, purchased, and donated books at our onsite book drive at ECBC’s BOOK IT! charity run! At one to 20 books a person, every book makes a difference! A special thank you to SCHOLASTIC for your super generous donation of a fantastic collection of books. Coupled with our online book drive, the book drive part of our fundraiser provides us with several months worth of books for our events and programs.

We are currently giving away approximately 400 new books per month to patients at CHOC between our various commitments, with the demand increasing as we continue to expand our programs. One of our next goals is to get to floors other than Oncology and Neurology! Our online BOOK IT fundraising/bookraising campaign will be running for another few weeks (until October 8th). If you haven’t yet had a chance to contribute, please consider clicking HERE to donate fund a new hardcover book ($20) or a book box for kids diagnosed with cancer ($100).

THANK YOU for helping ECBC help Orange County’s hospitalized kids thrive through treatment with high-quality books and read-alouds!


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Bedside Reading is Officially 2x/Week at CHOC!

Too bad we can’t show faces b/c boy was this teen’s expression priceless — pure joy!

We are so excited that ECBC is now offering bedside reading by our awesome expert readers (mostly current and retired teachers and librarians) two times per week at CHOC Children’s Hospital! We are taking baby steps for sure towards our goal of being able to provide the opportunity for a read aloud to every patient every day — but our slow yet steady progress towards this goal means we are expanding our program thoughtfully, without compromising the quality of the reader or the read-aloud experience. Not all read-alouds are equal; there actually is an art to it!! And we’re proud to be providing quality read-aloud interactions with the best literature and good dialoguing. Which is so powerful especially for the many patients we read to who are not in school, receiving few if any other literature-based experiences, often spend substantial time on screens, may have a condition or be receiving treatment that affects cognition, need to escape the hospital walls, and/or just need to connect with another human being! Thank you to ECBC’s amazing (and growing) bedside reading team!!

If you didn’t make it to BOOK IT! last week (our annual charity run) and would like to support ECBC’s growing programs such as this one, the BOOK IT! online fundraising campaign will be running for another few weeks. Please CLICK HERE to donate!

If you missed the charity run and would like to hear Ethan’s brief welcome/update, please CLICK HERE or image above to view.


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THANK YOU, BOOK IT! 2019 PARTICIPANTS!

A HUGE thank you to our AWESOME community for joining us last Sunday at Ethan & Choco’s Book Club’s (ECBC) 2nd annual charity run and book drive —BOOK IT! Racing for Reading for Hospitalized Kids! Approximately 400 racers (and nearly 500 total including volunteers, sponsors, vendors, and supporters) came to walk, run, fundraise, book-raise, and make our event an amazing success! The amount of funds raised is still to be determined, but it is looking like we will have a net profit that exceeds our profit from BOOK IT 2018. The book drive component of the event was also super successful: the online pre-event book drive resulted in over 95 hardcover book donations and 132 Read+Think+Thrive book box donations for kids diagnosed with cancer, and the onsite book drive yielded hundreds more new books. What a great (and needed) boost to our Lending and Gifting libraries at CHOC! Beyond the funds and books raised, many made their mark on the Handprint Wall with their book recommendation for the CHOC library, jumped in the bounce house, used the photo booth, spun the big wheel and bought books from Scholastic, met authors and bought signed copies of books, donated purchased books at the ECBC booth, wrote Care Cards to go in oncology kids’ book boxes, had their faces painted and cartoon caricatures drawn, warmed up with CHOCO the CHOC bear mascot, enjoyed the all-you-can-eat pancake and sausage breakfast, participated in the book character costume contest, and raced their hearts out on the beautiful Jeffrey Open Space Trail. It was so fun to see so many doing this in their bright orange “BOOK IT!” shirts and sporting “Run Read Thrive” medals!. Congratulations to top 5K finishers (male winner Timothy Lam, female winner Kaylah Tasser) and to our 10K winners (male – Sam Juliano, female –  Helena Madden), as well as to all age division winners. And congratulations to Costume Contest winners (the Peter Pan family, Elephant & Piggie, and the Harry Potter couple) and to everyone who added to our themed race by sporting literary costumes!

Thank you to Jeffrey Trail Middle School, Irvine Unified School District, and the city of Irvine for providing us with a fantastic location for our event.  Thank you to Caren Ware and Itz About Time for their expertise in course management and timing equipment. My deepest thank you to our Title Sponsor, KOI CBD for stepping up in the final weeks before race day to support our cause (click here to learn more), and a huge thank you to all of our sponsors: Paris Family Trust (T-Shirt Sponsor), Behr Paint (Medals Sponsor), Enderle Center (Handprint Wall Sponsor), Rise Up Foundation (Costume Contest Sponsor), 5 Boroughs Book Club (Double Book Box Sponsor), VOIT Real Estate (Double Book Box Sponsor), Sur West Homes (Book Box Sponsor) and AA Jewel Box, Cancer clothing, Erin Denes/Berkshire Hathaway Realtor, and Adriene Madden/Magic Maple Tree for your in-kind sponsorships. Thank you as well to all of our event partners: Children’s Hospital of Orange County, KidsREAD!, MaxLove Project, PaKua Martial Arts, Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation, American Academy of Pediatrics Orange County Chapter, Orange County Children’s Book Festival, Orange County Public Library Foundation, Orange County Department of Education, Nothing Bundt Cakes, and Creative Parties for Kids. We couldn’t have pulled this off without all of our terrific sponsors and  partners!

Also thank you to MC Andrea Kooiman for providing such an energetic and positive vibe; Master Clawson for leading a super fun warm-up; Emily Frye for all your help with design and artwork; Zov’s for proving the waters; Smart & Final and Sprouts for providing bananas and oranges; Kiwanis Club of Irvine for the all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast; Francie Rosen and Balloons Sound Great for the 1K Fun Run Arch; and Abigail Tweedt for stepping up to sing the National Anthem. Thank you to Scholastic Books for providing terrific titles to sell for the onsite book drive as well as your significant donation of books. Thank you to children’s authors Sheri Fink, Mara James, Derek Taylor Kent, Adriene Madden, Jennifer Gray Olson, Dan Paley, and Suzi Shaffer for joining us with signed copies of your books for the book drive, and thank you to Susie Alexander / Once Upon a Storybook for inviting authors and being a vital part of our cause and events. Thank you to Barry Ackerman, Event Coordinator, who worked tirelessly on many aspects of the event and without whom BOOK IT! would not have been possible. And thank you to the rest of the BOOK IT 2019 planning team for your hard work in the weeks and months leading up to event day — especially Susie Alexander, Sandy Tweedt, Fenny Kokenge, Mary Kay Viscounty, Deb Kennard, David and Danielle Clawson, and Julie Schulman. It was our first year to have a planning team, and as such they helped to secure sponsors, authors, volunteers, and participants — thus expanding our reach in the community. Also, this event would not have happened without the great volunteers who came out to help on race day. Thank you to the Assistance League of Tustin, ECBC’s Bedside Readers, Girl Scout Troop #3115, Nicole Photoglou, Toby and Roger Kuo, Denes family, and Tyler Yang. This event is a big undertaking for our tiny organization, and it truly does take a community to pull it off. You are all so appreciated. 

And finally, thank you to the many individuals and families who came out to help make the event such a success! A special thank you to the awesome 36 participants who signed up for the 10K, which was a new event this year that we hope provides a starting place for growth in future BOOK ITs! Thank you to the many participants (many whom we don’t know) who promoted on social media, recruited more participants  (the “shares” directly resulted in registrations) and called teams together. A huge shout out to our largest teams: Hewes Middle School, Equalizers, Sherwin-Williams/IREM OC, MatchPoint Tennis Academy, Foothill High School, and Arroyo Elementary School.

I sincerely hope that our community views ECBC’s cause as their cause too, benefiting the kids of Orange County who end up in the hospital. With two years of our charity run under our belt, we hope to continue to grow our annual event so that it continues to support our growing reading programs at CHOC, and hopefully someday a sustainable library there as well. THANK YOU FOR “BOOKING IT” FOR READING FOR KIDS AT CHOC CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL! See you back next year for BOOK IT! 2020!

** If you couldn’t make it on race day but would still like to contribute to our annual fundraiser — either because you want to support BOOK IT! directly or as a way to honor childhood cancer awareness month, it’s not too late! The online book drive/fundraising campaign will be running for a month after the event, until October 8, 2019.

TO DONATE ONLINE, CLICK HERE
TO CHECK OUT THE ALBUM OF RACE DAY PHOTOS, CLICK HERE
TO VIEW RACE DAY RESULTS, CLICK HERE
TO VIEW ETHAN’S OPENING WORDS, CLICK HERE
TO VIEW RUNNERS BOOKING IT, CLICK HERE]


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Yesterday’s bedside reading highlight — Help ECBC keep this going and sign up for BOOK IT! 2019!

One of the best things about running ECBC’s bedside reading program at CHOC Children’s Hospital is the feedback from our expert read aloud volunteers after a shift at CHOC. The reports of “yes, I want a read aloud”, of the child’s reaction to the book, of the requests for “one more story.” These are kids that are often not in school, may spend significant time on screens, and sometimes have few to none literature-based experiences or opportunities to escape their hospital world. Yesterday, both bedside reader volunteers reported that the highlight of their day was their session with a 12- and a 13- year-old boy (the age/gender combo that tends to be the most reluctant to get a “yes” from). Both read aloud picture books with true stories — one of a World War 2 soldier’s friendship with a local Filipino girl (Tucky Jo and Little Heart, by Patricia Polocco) and the other a story of a con man who posed as a government official to “sell” the Eiffel Tower to scrap metal dealers before being caught and imprisoned (Tricky Vic, by Greg Pizzoli ). Two teen/tweenage boys, agreeing to being read, agreeing to picture books (albeit sophisticated ones that target an older audience), connecting with another, dialoguing about a new story with rich content …that’s what this is all about. Allowing books and reading to help kids THRIVE while at the hospital, not just get through their stay.

As of September, ECBC’s bedside reading program is expanding from one to two days a week — allowing us to reach more hospital floors and more kids. This is one of ECBC’s reading programs, among others, that demand a successful charity run and book drive next weekend! So PLEASE join us!! Click image below to register, donate, and more! Nine days to go…Please sign up now!!


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BOOK IT! 2019 is 2 weeks away!

Please join us on September 8th in Irvine and walk/run for reading for hospitalized kids! Click the e-flyer below to register, join or create a team, donate, and more! Donate to our new book drive online or onsite to get a free pancake breakfast! And dress up as your favorite children’s book character and participate in our costume contest!

Click here to access race registrationsite


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A Productive Day at CHOC

Today ECBC trained a terrific new bedside reader volunteer (Karen Malone Ottoson — so happy to have you on board!); gave away a bunch of new books to toddlers through teens at our Super Book Give-Away alongside MaxLove’s Be Super Party in the CHOC lobby; delivered 125 new books to the Outpatient Infusion Center; conducted bedside reading in oncology and neurology patients’ rooms; and offered patients in isolation books to keep from our mobile Gifting Library Cart. A busy, great day at CHOC for ECBC!

PLEASE help ECBC keep this all this going for Orange County’s hospitalized kids and join us at our 2nd annual charity run — BOOK IT! Racing for Reading for Hospitalized Kids! Race is in 23 days — sign up now!!!

Click HERE to register, donate, and more!


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Join us at BOOK IT! 2019 and race for reading for hospitalized kids!

Please watch Ethan’s video and sign up for BOOK IT! 2019, ECBC’s 2nd Annual Charity Run — Sunday, September 8 at Jeffrey Trails Middle School and Jeffrey Open Space Trail in Irvine…

Click on www.runsignup.com/runreadthrive to register, donate, and more!

BOOK IT is one month from today — we need your support!


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SPONSORS NEEDED FOR BOOK IT #2!

ECBC’s 2nd annual charity run is just 6 weeks away, and we are urgently needing a title sponsor at the $5000 level. Title sponsor receives event naming on the start/finish banner, large logo on t-shirt, website presence, and up to 10 runner registrations. PLEASE share this with family and friends who could be potential sponsors! We also are looking for corporate sponsors ($3500), book box sponsors ($500+) and in-kind sponsors that cover items such as bounce house, photo booth, etc ($250). CLICK HERE for the sponsor form, and CLICK HERE to see which sponsor levels are taken and still needed.

A HUGE thank you to those in our community who have committed to sponsor BOOK IT #2!! Paris Family Trust (T-shirt Sponsor), Behr Paint Company (Medal Sponsor), Enderle Center (Handprint Wall Sponsor), Rise Up Foundation (Costume Contest Sponsor), Voit Real Estate (two Book Box sponsorships), Cancer Clothing (In-Kind), and Erin Denes/Berkshire Hathaway (In-Kind). The success of our event and continuation of our reading programs for hospitalized kids are dependent on your support , so we are hugely grateful.

If you haven’t signed up yet, please CLICK HERE to register. We are currently behind last year’s numbers, yet we need to double them in order to sustain our book and reading programs at CHOC Children’s Hospital! Also, when you register (or if you can’t join us), please consider donating to our virtual book drive (using the same registration link) — which last year was able to provide enough book boxes and books to maintain 6-8 months of our programs. 1K/5k/10K, custom medals and t-shirts for all participants, division winner awards, book character costume contest with prizes, and option to purchase a pancake breakfast. Donate a book or book box online when you register, or bring a new book to the run on race day — and receive a free pancake breakfast!