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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LAST DAY OF BOOK IT!

Today is the last day of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, and it is also the final day of ECBC’s annual BOOK IT Fundraiser! We are just under 50% of our fundraising goal, so if anyone has intended to donate but hasn’t yet had the chance, PLEASE consider doing so now — it takes just a few minutes! Today we feature two of the many oncology kiddos who have benefited from our Read Think Thrive Bag program: Carter, who is no longer with us but his love of reading impacts ECBC through his amazing community’s CarterStrongForever book drives; and Blake, a current oncology warrior who is reading and thriving through a marathon of a battle with brain cancer. These bags (a mini library of ten new books curated by the age of the child + book crafting supplies) go to every child at CHOC infant/toddler through teen/young adult who is diagnosed with cancer, and the goal is to someday get these to all kids who are diagnosed with cancer throughout the U.S.– a hefty goal for our tiny nonprofit with a cost of approximately $150/bag. New cancer diagnoses at CHOC this year are the highest they have been in the history of the hospital — at 94 to date since January, we need additional funding to keep up!

If you haven’t yet donated and would like to help us continue to fund our Read Think Thrive Bag program for kids just diagnosed with cancer , we would so appreciate your support! Donate at www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2022. We know first hand the benefits of books and reading through treatment and are passionate about making sure other patients have the same opportunities to thrive — but we need your help! Please share this post if you can!

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Two Days Left of BOOK IT!

There are two days left of ECBC’s annual BOOK IT fundraiser, and we are at just 40% of our fundraising goal. We are hoping for a strong finish in our final two days as we need to do significantly better to keep funding all of our book and reading programs and CHOC Children’s Hospital. Each day of these last few days, I have been sharing a photo of an Oncology kiddo at CHOC whom our programs have benefited. Today we have two featured warriors: Blake, holding one of the two Halloween-themed books he received from ECBC’s annual BOO-ks for Treats event at CHOC (where we donate approximately 600 new Halloween books for patients toddler through young adult); and Isabella, an oncology patient living at Miracle Manor (Miracles for Kids’ subsidized housing for CHOC families) who just received books from ECBC at the Miracle Manor Christmas party (ECBC provides holiday books for all kids living at Miracle Manor, picked out for each child by their personal interests). If you haven’t yet donated and would like to help us continue to fund our book gifting programs for oncology kids stuck in the hospital over the holidays , we would so appreciate your support! Donate at www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2022. Even the smallest donations will help us to keep all of our programs going!

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Final Three Days of BOOK IT!

There are three days left of ECBC’s annual BOOK IT fundraiser, and we are at just 40% of our fundraising goal. We are hoping for a strong finish in these last few days as we need to do significantly better to keep funding all of our book and reading programs and CHOC Children’s Hospital. Each day of these last few days, I am sharing a photo of an Oncology kiddo at CHOC whom our programs have benefited. Here’s today’s featured warrior: Ruby, a teen cancer patient at CHOC who is a member of ECBC’s Teens Thrive Reading Group — a virtual book club for teen and young adult oncology patients and survivors that provides a free Kindle, Kindle case, and monthly Kindle books to participants. The club is currently offered to CHOC oncology patients but with enough funding we hope to expand it to offer to oncology teens across the country. If you haven’t yet donated and would like to help us continue to fund our teen/young adult book club program, we would so appreciate your support! Donate at www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2022.

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Final Four Days of BOOK IT!

There are just four days left of ECBC’s annual BOOK IT fundraiser, and we are just shy of 2/5 of our fundraising goal. We are hoping for a strong finish in these last few days as we need to do significantly better to keep funding all of our book and reading programs and CHOC Children’s Hospital. Each day of these last few days, I am sharing a photo of an Oncology kiddo at CHOC whom our programs have benefited. Here’s today’s featured warrior: a child on the inpatient side who is being read to by Mary Kay, one of ECBC’s amazing bedside readers/literacy coach experts who shares quality literature and reads aloud in a way that models and nurtures literacy skills and rich dialogue. Oncology patients are often not attending school and missing literature-based classroom experiences, and they also often receive chemo that affects their neurocognitive functioning — so this program aims to provide cognitive benefits in addition to social and emotional ones! Our bedside reading program depends on hardcover books for read alouds, paperback books that can be gifted, art supplies for book-inpspired crafting, and other support materials such as bookmarks, motivational reading bracelets, parent “how to support literacy through treatment” pamphlets and various operational costs including off-site storage of books. If you haven’t yet donated and would like to help us continue to fund our inpatient bedside reading program, we would so appreciate your support. Donate at www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2022.

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Final Five Days of BOOK IT!

There are just five days left of ECBC’s annual BOOK IT fundraiser, and we are just shy of 2/5 of our fundraising goal. We are hoping for a strong finish in these last few days as we need to do significantly better to keep funding all of our book and reading programs and CHOC Children’s Hospital. Each day of these last few days, I am sharing a photo of an Oncology kiddo at CHOC whom our programs have benefited. Here’s today’s featured warrior: Will is selecting a book as he leaves the Outpatient Infusion Center (OPI) after receiving chemo — kids get to select a book at every visit to the OPI or the Oncology Clinic from our outpatient gifting libraries. If you haven’t yet donated and would like to help us continue to fund our outpatient libraries for kids like Will, we would so appreciate your support. Donate at www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2022.

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We are halfway through BOOK IT and need your help!

It’s more than halfway through Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, which means it’s more than halfway through our annual BOOK IT fundraiser! And we’ve only raised 1/4 of our fundraising goal — a goal we need to reach to be able to continue all our book gifting and reading programs at CHOC,  as well as to grow our impact to reach more kids on more patient floors.  This past week, a Facebook memory popped up from September 15th, six years ago. It was a post with a link to this video of Ethan giving his 259th “Book Look”, which was how we collected our first few thousand books after initially launching ECBC. Ethan was  still in the midst of treatment, and as is obvious, he is visibly not feeling well (link to video: https://youtu.be/e742S_o5HvA). This video, of Ethan pushing through the discomfort caused by chemo and steroids, is a reminder of just how strongly he believed in the mission of ECBC and wanted to ensure that other kids going through treatment for cancer received the same benefits of books and reading. In honor of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and our efforts to continue to help oncology patients and other hospitalized kids to continue to thrive w, please help us!

If you haven’t yet completed our Run5-Donate5-Nominate5- challenge, please click on the “Donate” button in this email to learn more and make a “multiple of 5” donation. If doing the challenge feels too difficult, of course you can simply donate! We need our community to keep on doing what we do!

Click on graphic above to access the BOOK IT donation site


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Please consider supporting ECBC in honor of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month!

This photo popped up in my Facebook feed today — from September 1, 2015 — the first day of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month six years ago and also the day that Ethan returned to school for 3rd grade after missing all of second grade. He had just finished the hardest part of his 3.5 year battle with Leukemia. While he still had a ways to go at this point with 2.5 more years of chemo, he was kicking cancer’s butt — loving school, playing tennis and golf, and reading voraciously into so many fictional and nonfictional worlds. This photo was also just a few months before we founded Ethan & Choco’s Book Club (ECBC), where Ethan and I committed to making sure that kids undergoing treatment at CHOC, especially life-altering illness such as cancer, received the same benefits from books and reading that he did while battling Leukemia. 

ECBC has come a long way since its inception — with numerous inpatient and outpatient reading programs for patients of all ages and gifting thousands of books a year. BUT we need your help in order to sustain our book gifting programs and re-launch our inpatient programs in October (we were just given the green light to bring our volunteers back to CHOC, woo hoo!). We are highly dependent on our annual fundraiser, BOOK IT, which provides the majority of the funds ECBC needs to run its programs. In the spirit of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month , please consider supporting thrivership for kid cancer warriors by donating to our online fundraiser.  We are aiming to raise enough funds to get us to next September 2022, when we are hoping to host a full BOOK IT with a return of our in-person charity runs and book drive.

Here’s how you can help:

  • Make a monetary donation online at www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2021
  • Become a “fundraiser”, with your own fundraiser name, monetary goal, and unique URL that can be used to send people directly to your fundraiser page. Click here to set up your fundraising page.
  • Donate a book directly. Click here to access the BOOK IT 2021 Amazon Wish List. All books purchased from this list will be automatically sent to Ethan & Choco’s Book Club.
  • Conduct your own book drive. If you wish to collect books on your own or conduct your own book drive with your family/friends/workplace for subsequent in-person donation, please email ali@ECbookclub.com We will send you a link to a separate wish list that you can share with your community and that let’s you specify the address to ship the books.
  • Help us spread the word by sharing the link to the donation site: http://www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2021.

Thank you for helping Orange County’s hospitalized kids thrive through treatment!


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PLEASE support BOOK IT 2021 with an online donation!

PLEASE HELP Support BOOK IT 2021!

We’re currently running our annual fundraising push — which is, again for a second year, online only. We so wish it could be through our in-person charity run and book drive, though that was not possible due to the ongoing uncertainty around potential Covid-19 restrictions at the time that event decisions had to be made. HOWEVER, ECBC NEEDS YOUR HELP NOW MORE THAN EVER!  Our costs are way up, since outgoing book donations actually increased during Covid, while incoming book donations have been way down over the past year and a half. Additionally, ECBC just received the green light to resume our bedside reading and library programs on the inpatient side of CHOC on October 15th. Which is AWESOME news — but we need enough funds to sustain the new book gifting activities we are doing with CHOC outpatient as well as re-launch our programs that we were running pre-Covid. We are aiming to raise enough funds to get us to September 2022, when we are hoping to host a full BOOK IT with a return of our in-person charity runs, book drive, and celebration of thrivership against cancer through books and reading!

Here are five ways you can support the BOOK IT 2021 virtual fundraiser:

  1. Make a monetary donation online at www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2021
  2. Become a “fundraiser”, with your own fundraiser name, monetary goal, and unique URL that can be used to send people directly to your fundraiser page. Click here to set up your fundraising page.
  3. Donate a book directly. Click here to access the BOOK IT 2021 Amazon Wish List. All books purchased from this list will be automatically sent to Ethan & Choco’s Book Club.
  4. Conduct your own book drive. If you wish to collect books on your own or conduct your own book drive with your family/friends/workplace for subsequent in-person donation, please email ali@ECbookclub.com We will send you a link to a separate wish list that you can share with your community and that let’s you specify the address to ship the books. 
  5. Help us spread the word by sharing the link to the donation site: http://www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2021

Thank you for helping Orange County’s hospitalized kids thrive thrive through treatment!


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Please Support BOOK IT 2021, ECBC’s Annual Fundraiser!

It’s that time of year for Ethan & Choco’s Book Club to do our annual fundraising push. We wish it could be through our  in-person charity run and book drive. However, due to the ongoing uncertainty around potential Covid-19 restrictions at the time that event decisions had to be made, ECBC will not be hosting our in-person event again this year.  We are, however, conducting the virtual fundraising and book drive component of BOOK IT, which we hope will receive a strong response so that ECBC can continue to sustain and grow its book and reading programs at CHOC Children’s Hospital. 

We need your support now more than ever!  Our costs are way up (since outgoing book donations actually increased during Covid), while incoming book donations have been way down over the past year and a half. We are aiming to raise enough funds to get us to September 2022, when we are hoping to host a full BOOK IT with a return of our in-person charity runs, book drive, and celebration of thrivership against cancer through books and reading!

Here are five ways you can support the BOOK IT 2021 virtual fundraiser:

  1. Make a monetary donation online at www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2021
  2. Become a “fundraiser”, with your own fundraiser name, monetary goal, and unique URL that can be used to send people directly to your fundraiser page. Click here to set up your fundraising page.
  3. Donate a book directly. Click here to access the BOOK IT 2021 Amazon Wish List. All books purchased from this list will be automatically sent to Ethan & Choco’s Book Club.
  4. Conduct your own book drive. If you wish to collect books on your own or conduct your own book drive with your family/friends/workplace for subsequent in-person donation, please email ali@ECbookclub.com We will send you a link to a separate wish list that you can share with your community and that let’s you specify the address to ship the books. 
  5. Help us spread the word by sharing the link to the donation site: http://www.runsignup.com/BOOKIT2021

Thank you for helping Orange County’s hospitalized kids thrive thrive through treatment!


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THANK YOU BOOK IT 2020 SUPPORTERS!

A HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who supported ECBC’s BOOK IT 2020 Virtual Book Drive by donating, creating a fundraising team, and/or sharing on social media! 124 donors raised $22,000+, which is just over 2/3 of our fundraising goal. While this is not quite enough to sustain our full programs once we are given the green light to do so, it is wonderful given that we could not have our annual in-person event this year (which has been responsible for 50% of our revenue in past years) — and it is enough for ECBC to get going now with our Covid-modified programs.

The BOOK IT donation site is still up and open for donations if you haven’t had a chance to contribute (runsignup.com/BOOKIT2020), though there will be no more explicit monetary donation pushes for BOOK IT until 2021. We still will, however, need to continue with outreach for book donations, especially since our programming is currently 100% book gifting and with a lack of our usual large school and philanthropic group book donations.*

I would like to extend a super special thank you to our top donors and fundraising teams. THANK YOU to our top fundraisers Mary Kay Viscounty, Susie Alexander, Team Portstreets, and Zack Adzich. We are so grateful for your personal efforts to rally others behind our cause. A tremendous thank you also to our top individual donors: Tod & Sharon Paris, Fidelity National Title Company, Bill and Royce Bellaty, Kevin Kodzis, Behr Paint, Fenny’s Flowers, Enderle Center, Peter Royston, Stahl Family, Antonius Family, Tweedt Family, and an ongoing ECBC friend and advocate who wishes to remain anonymous but deserves mention being our very top donor! Together, this mighty group was vital to the success of this campaign, having contributed more than half of the total funds raised. 

Thank you for supporting ECBC during this especially difficult time to be a super tiny nonprofit. Your donations allow ECBC to keep helping hospitalized kids to thrive through treatment with books and reading — which is a powerful contributor to cognitive health and thus general wellness. 

Please stay connected with ECBC by following us on our website (ethanandchocosbookclub.com) or on Facebook/Instagram (@ethanandchocosbookclub). And save the date for BOOKIT 2021, hopefully in-person — Monday, September 6. 

With deepest gratitude,

Ali, Ethan and the ECBC Team

* Please know that 100% of funds and books raised go to ECBC operating and program costs — ECBC has no employees and I take no salary.