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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ECBC’s New Year’s Update

 

Helping Hospitalized Kids

Thrive with Books and Reading

 

This past year, Ethan & Choco’s Book Club (ECBC) continued to help hospitalized kids, especially those battling cancer and other life-threatening conditions, thrive through treatment with the help of books and reading. We are thrilled to share a few highlights from 2018 as well as our plans for 2019.

2018 Highlights: Last year ECBC…

  • Launched our inpatient Bedside Reading program, called “Reading Aloud in Every Room”, on the oncology and neurology floor at CHOC Children’s Hospital. An amazing team of trained, “expert reader” volunteers offer engaging read-alouds using high-quality literature to patients of all ages. Pilot data will be analyzed after the program has been running for a full year, but a preliminary look at the data shows a very positive patient response, with many more patients than expected  saying “yes” to reading and putting down their screens! 
  • Launched our inpatient Mobile Book Cart program, where volunteers transport a “library on wheels” to gift new, high-quality books to patients in isolation at CHOC.
  • Pulled off our inaugural community fundraising event — BOOK IT! Racing for Reading for Hospitalized Kids. BOOK IT! was a huge success, with almost 500 registered runners, over 500 new books collected, and enough money raised to fund a year’s worth of Read+Think+Thrive Boxes for new cancer diagnoses at CHOC.
  • Continued to host monthly Super Book Give-Aways in the hospital lobby alongside MaxLove Project’s Thrive Parties, giving away new books to patients and siblings of all ages.
  • Began delivering new books to CHOC’s Outpatient Infusion Center (OPI) to restock their shelves on a monthly basis. 
  • Hosted our 2nd annual BOO-KS for Treats on Halloween, giving away approximately 350 new Halloween-themed books to CHOC patients and siblings who were stuck in the hospital on Halloween. This year, we had Halloween books for teens and young adults, and it was especially fun to see so many teens trick-or-treating for books!
  • Continued to provide Read+Think+Thrive Boxes (mini-library of 10 new books and crafting supplies) to new cancer diagnoses at CHOC as well as occasional other boxes for new diagnoses outside of CHOC.
  • Officially incorporated as a California nonprofit corporation!

With your support in 2019, we plan to focus on these 5 goals:

  1. Expand our bedside reading program so that it moves from one day a week and one floor to multiple days a week and multiple floors, thus working towards our goal of offering reading aloud to every patient every day they are in the hospital (which would meet recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics of fifteen minutes per day of reading — a practice that hospitalized kids, especially those battling life-threatening illness and not in school, so very need.
  2. Expand our Mobile Book Cart program to more floors, and more significantly, add a Lending Library Cart to our current Gifting Library Cart so that patients can check out books and have more access to more titles and greater variety.
  3. Work with CHOC Children’s Hospital to systematically deliver a Read+Think+Thrive Box to every child at the hospital diagnosed with cancer or another life-threatening illness, and raise enough funds to scale up this program beyond CHOC to another children’s hospital in California. Also, to begin online referral of book boxes to other kids diagnosed with cancer around the country. 
  4. Continue our book-give away events at CHOC, including our monthly Super Book Give-Away with MaxLove Project’s Thrive Parties and our annual BOO-KS for Treats on Halloween, and also continue to re-stock OPI’s shelves on a monthly basis.
  5. Host BOOK IT! 2019, hopefully increasing the number of participants running and the number of books donated. BOOK IT! #2 will be Sunday, September 8 2019, location to be determined. Please SAVE THE DATE!

We are so grateful to our community of supporters who helped ECBC this past year. A special thank you to our greatest donors and partners, including: Alane Adams and Rise Up Foundation, Barry Ackerman and Kids READ!, MaxLove Project, CHOC Children’s Hospital, Tod and Sharon Paris, Mary and Vaso Adzich, Orange Coast College, Once Upon a Storybook, Creston Books, Orange County Children’s Book Festival, Emily Frye, Arroyo Elementary School, Tarbut ‘V Torah Community Day School, Myford Elementary School, Pakua Martial Arts, Scholastic Books, National League of Young Men Tustin, Girl Scout Troop #3152, Hanna Calderone’s Bat Mitzvah Project, authors Sheri Fink and Derek Taylor Kent, authors Ganit and Adir Levy, Diana Mordin, Ashley Netsky, Dennis Dubrow, Rob and Brooke Lieberman, the Fourth Tuesday of the Month Book Club, and Adriene Madden/Magic Tree House.

Given our ongoing programs at CHOC Children’s Hospital and the significant number books we are giving away, we need to increase incoming funds and books, as well as create more partnerships with schools, corporations, publishers and philanthropic groups that can provide ongoing support. We’re currently giving away more books than we’re receiving, which we need to change in order to sustain the work we are doing! Please help us have a good start to 2019 by supporting ECBC in one of these ways:

  • Make a one-time or a recurring monetary donation to ECBC.  CLICK HERE to donate.
    • $20 funds a new hardcover book for the Lending Library
    • $50 funds five paperback books for the Gifting Library (or two hardcover books)
    • $100 funds a Read+Think+Thrive Box for a child newly diagnose with cancer
  • Purchase books from our Amazon Wish List to donate to our Lending and Gifting libraries — books will be sent directly to ECBC. CLICK HERE to access our list. Or,  CLICK HERE to access the wish lists to donate books for Read+Think+Thrive Boxes.

We can’t wait to continue to work on making books and reading a core part of the care that CHOC patients receive! Our ultimate goal is to help bring books and literature-based experiences to children’s hospitals around the country, so as we work to build our program at CHOC, we always have the dual goal of creating a model that can be applied elsewhere. THANK YOU for being part of our efforts!

A bit of recognition from CHOC

Sandy and Cindy, two of ECBC’s Bedside Reader volunteers, with our Read-Aloud Wagons

Charity run participants “booking it”!

BOO-KS for Treats at CHOC!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ECBC’s Gifting Library cart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ethan & Choco’s Book Club is a public benefit, non-profit corporation, EIN83-2934289. 501c3 status pending.  


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Ethan’s Ten Thrive Titles for November and December (& October/November/December Thank Yous)

In this video, Ethan first thanks book donors in the months of October, September, and December for their generous book donations. In part 2 of the video, Ethan shares his lists of Ten Thrive Titles (TTT) for November and December 2018 — which are his specially curated lists of books that are needed for his Read+Think+Thrive Boxes for kids diagnosed with cancer or other life-threatening illnesses. The lists shared here are the books needed for book boxes for teen and young adult boys and for teen and young adult girls. Books can be purchased and sent directly to Ethan & Choco’s Book Club by clicking on the links to our wish lists on Amazon. Please click here for the list for teen boys and click here for the list for teen girls). 

Thank you for helping ECBC reach our goal of providing a book box to every new cancer diagnosis at CHOC Children’s Hospital!

To learn more about ECBC’s Read+Think+Thrive Boxes, click here! On this page, you can also find links to all twelve TTT lists for each of the ageXgender categories of Read+Think+Thrive Boxes, and you can click on any of the links to purchase/send books directly to ECBC. We constantly need books for all ages to provide these boxes!

*Please keep in mind that we will ALWAYS need hardcover and paperback books for our permanent Lending Library and our special situations (including patients in isolation) Gifting Libraries at CHOC. The link to our General Wish List for our hospital libraries is ECBC’s General Wish List.


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Thank you ECBC volunteers!

This is a quick shout-out to ECBC’s amazing group of “expert reader” volunteers who helped bring books and reading to patients at CHOC Children’s Hospital this month. Our volunteers offered bedside reading with high-quality literature in patients’ rooms, gave away new books from our mobile Gifting Library Cart to patients in isolation, gifted holiday-themed books as part of MaxLove’s holiday Be Super Party, and delivered 100+ books to CHOC’s Outpatient Infusion Center. December is such a busy month for everyone — thank you Susie, Sandy, Cindi, Julie, Debbie, and Fenny for making the time to make sure that the kiddos at CHOC receive some reading and a new book this holiday season!


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Thank you Tarbut V’Torah for another amazing book drive!

Tarbut V’Torah just completed another book drive for ECBC, which makes this the third year in a row that TVT has collected and donated approximately 200 new, high-quality books (almost one book per student). Each year since we launched ECBC, Tarbut has run a book drive alongside their Scholastic Book Fair — with the students doing the advertising, promoting, and buying of the books. They are such an amazing model for how kids and schools can get involved and make a difference for other kids in our community,! @e need more schools like TVT in order to build a sustainable library and reading program at CHOC Children’s Hospital!

Thank you Tarbut for continuing to be a Thrive Partner School! ECBC appreciates your support so much!

Email to find out more about leading a school book drive or becoming a Thrive Partner school! 


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2nd Annual BOO-ks for Treats at CHOC was a Success!

Ethan & Choco’s Book Club had a FANTASTIC morning handing out Halloween-themed books to patients yesterday as part of CHOC’s annual trick-or-treating event! We gave away around 300 terrific books to dressed-up patients of all ages — from toddlers to teens and from board books to young adult literature. We also delivered another 100 Halloween books to kids visiting CHOC’s Outpatient Infusion Center for chemo. It was especially fun to be offering healthier treats!

Thank you to everyone for their generous donations for making this possible! Specific thank yous to come soon when Ethan does his book request and thank you video for the month of November — but for now a special shout out to Arroyo Elementary School, Tod and Sharon Paris, Diano Mordin for hosting Ciara and Carter’s Book Drive, and ALL of our amazing Amazon donors. We couldnt bring reading to kids in the hospital without the support of our awesome community!

 

 

 


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Ethan’s Ten Thrive Titles for September and October (& August/September Thank Yous)

In this video, Ethan first thanks book donors in the months of August and September for their generous book donations. In part 2 of the video, Ethan shares his lists of Ten Thrive Titles (TTT) for September and October 2018 — which are his specially curated lists of books that are needed for his Read+Think+Thrive Boxes for kids diagnosed with cancer or other life-threatening illnesses. The lists shared here are the books needed for book boxes for infant/toddler boys and for infant/toddler girls. Books can be purchased and sent directly to Ethan & Choco’s Book Club by clicking on the links to our wish lists on Amazon. Please click here for the list for infant/toddler boys and click here for the list for infant/toddler girls). 

Thank you for helping ECBC reach our goal of providing a book box to every new cancer diagnosis at CHOC Children’s Hospital!

To learn more about ECBC’s Read+Think+Thrive Boxes, click here!

Also, we are in the final week of our Halloween Book Drive for ECBC’s BOO-KS for Treats event at CHOC on Halloween. If you’d like to donate a book for this event, please click here.

*Please keep in mind that we will ALWAYS need hardcover and paperback books for our permanent Lending Library and our special situations (including patients in isolation) Gifting Libraries at CHOC. The link to our General Wish List for our hospital libraries is ECBC’s General Wish List.

 


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Please Help Us with our Halloween-Themed Book Drive!

Now that it’s October, we are starting to collect Halloween-themed books for ECBC’s 2nd Annual BOO-KS for Treats at CHOC Children’s Hospital! CHOC’s Halloween trick-or-treating event is a special event for Ethan, as he participated in it just two days after he was diagnosed with Leukemia and the same day that he had surgery to place his port and begin chemotherapy. CHOC has 100+ booths for patients and siblings to trick or treat at (candy, toys, Build-a-Bear), and ECBC’s BOO-KS for Treats booth let’s them trick-or-treat for new Halloween books! We need 300-400 books for patients and sibs of all ages. Please click here to access our Halloween-themed wish list. All books purchased will be sent directly to ECBC and stamped with donor name. Thank you for your help!! #HalloweenBookDrive #BOOKSFORTREATS#HospitalizedKidsNeedBooksToo


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A successful day at the Orange County Children’s Book Festival

We had so much fun at the Orange County Children’s Book Festival on Sunday! Our booth was off to the side, so we weren’t sure how much traffic we’d have — but we had a ton of visitors (probably helped by the giant Spin Wheel we had out!). Ethan tirelessly shared his story of diagnosis, founding ECBC, what we’re doing now, and his someday dream for CHOC and all Children’s Hospitals at least 100 times — resulting in some monetary and book donations, and lots of awareness raised. And, Ethan got a particular kick out of the handful of people who came to our booth and said, ‘I know who you are, I follow ECBC on Facebook” or “We’ve been read to at CHOC by one of your bedside readers.” We hope to keep increasing our visibility in the community and our impact!

Thank you to Barry Ackerman and Kids READ! (a local nonprofit that donates gently used books to kids in need) for sharing the booth with ECBC and for obtaining the four tickets to Fancy Nancy the Musical that we raffled off. And a big thank you to Girl Scout Troop #3115  for hitting up all the authors at the book festival and collecting so many new books for ECBC (160)! This is the girls’ third year doing this for us and they’re old pros at it now — approaching author after author, describing our cause, and asking for book donations for hospitalized kids. We’re grateful for Troop 3115’s ongoing support!

And of course, thank you to the ECBC supporters who stopped by our booth — we appreciate you!!

Troop 3115 with one of the authors they visited for book donations


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BRBR! Bedside Reading Brief Report

Two of ECBC’s expert bedside readers with the Read Aloud Wagons

We had such a fantastic afternoon at CHOC yesterday, bringing books and reading to patients in all sorts of ways! Our bedside reading team spent the afternoon on the 5th floor (oncology, neurology) — getting almost  100% “yes”s to their offers of a read aloud from our Read-Aloud Wagon. It was super fun to see one patient receive her fourth Book Band (there are 10 ECBC Book Bands that patients can receive and collect for each time they accept a book or a read aloud), and especially to be very proud to be wearing them all. Our bedside readers also gave away a bunch of books to infant through teenage patients in isolation. In addition, we did our monthly book delivery to the Outpatient Infusion Center (“OPI”), where Ethan received all of his outpatient chemo — re-stocking their shelves with approximately 80 books for patients and siblings to read and take home.

Finally, as of yesterday, we explicitly communicated with CHOC that we are now ready to systematically provide a Read+Think+Thrive Box for every new cancer diagnosis at CHOC. Prior to this, we have been providing our book boxes informally and sporadically as we hear about them through MaxLove Project and word of mouth. From here on forward, CHOC will reach out to ECBC as kids are diagnosed so that we can provide a book box that is curated by age and gender of the patient right after diagnosis — which, as we know personally, is a time when books and reading are not on the forefront of caregivers’ minds but if put right in front of them perhaps will be embraced and provide comfort. A few hours after committing to providing the boxes systemically, we received an email from Child life about a newly diagnosed kid — so we promptly got a box together for a 7-year-old girl and delivered it.

Ethan and I are super excited about the Read+Think+Thrive Box program, and we’re eager to work on ramping it up so that we can more seamlessly assemble and deliver boxes to kids at CHOC. That being said, we need ongoing funding to be able to continue to provide boxes as kids are diagnosed. If you would like to support, click here to learn more about our Read+Think+Thrive Boxes, click on any of the links on that page to donate a book from one of our RTT box wish lists. or click here to fund a single RTT Box or an RTT Box monthly at $100/month (which would cover one new diagnosis each month). 

What a successful Thursday at CHOC!!

the RTT Box that yesterday went to a 7 year old just diagnosed with cancer.

 

 


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A great afternoon at CHOC of books, crafting, and GOLD for pediatric cancer awareness month

Ethan & Choco’s Book Club had a great afternoon last Thursday at CHOC! We spent the first two hours in the hospital lobby for our Super Book Give-Away, where we teamed up with MaxLove Project’s BeSuper Party and hosted a book-inspired craft in honor of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month (theme color of gold). We read aloud the classic picture book Where the Wild Things Are, which features main character Max who wears a gold crown and has an imagination that leads him on a wild and brave adventure, reflecting MaxLove Project’s “B” in their BeSuper Action Plan (“Boost yourself with super thoughts”). Patients and SuperSibs crafted their own gold crowns and received their own new copy of the book, and they also selected one to several books to keep from ECBC’s Gifting Library Cart.

We had a ton of fun highlighting gold, reading, and therapeutic crafting with MaxLove!

In the latter part of the afternoon, ECBC’s bedside reading volunteers had a terrific couple of hours on the oncology/neurology floor. They read aloud to many patients (toddlers through 10 year olds), and gave away a good number of books to patients in isolation. A successful afternoon of books and reading — we can’t wait to expand to more days of the week, more volunteers, and more reading reaching more patients.