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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Another successful afternoon at CHOC!

ECBC had a terrific afternoon yesterday at CHOC, with two of our programs going on at the same time and with such a good response. On the 5th floor (oncology/neurology), our bedside readers visited patient rooms with the Read-Aloud Wagon and read aloud with almost every available patient on the floor. We received so many more “YES”s to reading than we anticipated! And on the hospital lobby, ECBC gave away many books off our Gifting Library Cart to patients and siblings who came down for MaxLove’s Be Super Party (see photo — unfortunately we can’t share pics of patients). It has been a wonderful first four weeks since launching our program — so rewarding to see plans in action, to see books becoming part of patients hospital experience!

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THANK YOU, BOOK IT! 2018 PARTICIPANTS!

A HUGE thank you to our AWESOME community for joining us yesterday at ECBC’s inaugural charity run and book drive — BOOK IT! Racing for Reading for Hospitalized Kids! Nearly 500 racers (and nearly 600 people total including volunteers, sponsors, vendors, and supporters) came out to walk, run, fundraise, book-raise, and make our event an amazing success!  The amount of funds raised is not calculated yet, but we can say with certainty that we have a net profit that exceeds our expectations for this first year. The book drive component of the event was also super successful, with the online pre-event book drive resulting in over 75 hardcover book donations and over 45 Read+Think+Thrive book box donations, and the onsite book drive yielding hundreds more new books. What a great 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 with Scholastic, met authors and bought signed copies of books, warmed up and ran with CHOCO the bear, enjoyed the all-you-can-eat pancake and sausage breakfast, participated in the book character costume contest, and raced their hearts out. It was so fun to see so many doing all this in their bright yellow “BOOK IT!” shirts sporting “Run Read Thrive” medals!

Thank you to Orange Coast College for providing us with a fantastic location for our event. Thank you to Barry Ackerman, Event Coordinator, who worked tirelessly on all aspects of the event and without whom BOOK IT! would not have been possible. My deepest thank you to our Title Sponsor, children’s author Alane Adams’ Rise Up Foundation, and to all of our sponsors and partners: Children’s Hospital of Orange County, MaxLove Project, Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation, American Academy of Pediatrics Orange County Chapter, Orange County Department of Education, Orange County Public Library Foundation, T-shirt sponsor Paris Family Trust, Kids READ!, Pakua Martial Arts, Orange County Children’s Book Festival, Scholastic Books, Erin Denes/Berkshire Hathaway Realtor, Adriene Madden/Magic Tree House, Saddleback Educational Books, and PJ Library. We couldn’t have pulled this off without all of our terrific event partners!

Also thank you to DJ Rudy Novotny for providing such an energetic and positive vibe; Master David Clawson  for leading a super fun warm-up; Emily Frye for all your help with design and artwork; Sprouts for providing water and bananas; CR&R for providing trash containers; Kiwanis Club of Irvine for the all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast; Francie Rosen and Balloons Sound Great for the Entrance Arch; and Brighton Denes for stepping up to sing the National Anthem with no advance warning or time to practice — you are so brave Brighton! Thank you to children’s authors Alane Adams, Sheri Fink, Derek Taylor Kent, Dan Paley, Jennifer Grey Olson, and Suzi Schaffer for joining us with signed copies of your books for the on-site book drive, and thank you to Susie Alexander of Once Upon a Storybook for inviting authors and always supporting our cause and events. And special thanks to Caren Ware and Its About Time for their expertise in race planning and timing equipment.

Also, this event would not have happened without the great volunteers who came out to help. Thank you to Girl Scout Troop #3115, members of the Irvine Valley College Circle-K, UC Irvine UNICEF Team, Tustin NCL, and Tustin Boys Community Service League. And thank you to friends Kate Dearstyne, Kathleen Marshack, Julie Schulman, and Erin Denes who showed up super early and stayed late  to clean up — your unsolicited help is so appreciated.

And finally, my deepest thank you to the many individuals and families who came out to help make the event such a success! Thank you for promoting on social media, recruiting more participants, and creating teams — a huge shout out to our largest teams: Team Arroyo Elementary School, Equalizers Track Club, Team Shir Ha Mallot, Match Point Tennis Academy, and Team Hewes Middle School. And thank you for sharing your pictures and stories after the event , which plays a powerful role in helping to expand our community of support. I’m so very grateful.

Several have asked if there is the option to do a virtual run if you missed the event. We aren’t offering that this year, but we plan to for next year’s event. You may still support this year’s BOOK IT! via the race registration site by donating a hardcover book or by sponsoring a Read+Think+Thrive Box for new cancer diagnoses at CHOC. Access the donation button at https://runsignup.com/Race/Donate/CA/CostaMesa/RunReadThrive.

THANK YOU FOR “BOOKING IT” FOR READING FOR KIDS AT CHOC CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL. 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. And I hope that this inaugural charity run marks the beginning of an annual event that grows into a significant source of support for a sustainable library and reading program at CHOC. Thank you, AWESOME COMMUNITY, for being here with us from the beginning. See you back next year for BOOK IT! 2019!

To check out the BOOK IT! album of photos, click here
To check out a video of Ethan saying a few words, click here.
To check out the start of our race, click here.                                          


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And Our Inpatient Program has Finally Started!

As of yesterday, ECBC has officially started our inpatient bedside reading and mobile book cart program at CHOC Children’s Hospital! It has been a long road to get here, but we are THRILLED to be able to finally bring books and reading to patients ON THE FLOORS (ie Oncology floor), not just in the lobby — reading aloud, using high-quality literature and trained “expert” readers, giving away books to patients in isolation via our new Gifting Library Cart, engaging patients in book-inpsired crafting, and getting patients excited to take a break from screentime! THANK YOU to Susie Alexander and Sandy Tweedt for helping to make our launch event so successful; I’m SO grateful to have such AMAZING volunteers! 

Our inaugural charity run is just 3 days away — it’s not too late to sign up! As we start our new program at CHOC, we have many new and ongoing program expenses, so we can use all the support we can get! Please join us and help us bring books and reading, and eventually a lending library, to CHOC Children’s Hospital! Click HERE to register. 


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Ethan’s Ten Thrive Titles for April and May (& March / April Thank Yous)

In this video, Ethan thanks our most substantial donors in the months of March and April. We had so many wonderful donations during these months that it’s impossible to highlight just a few here, so please check out this video to hear Ethan’s thank you’s. Most notably, we are exceptionally grateful to author Alane Adams’ Rise Up Foundation for stepping up to be the Title Sponsor for our upcoming inaugural charity run. THANK YOU RISE UP FOR HELPING US TO ENSURE THAT WE BREAK EVEN AND IN FACT MAKE THIS EVENT A SUCCESS!!

In part 2 of this video, Ethan shares his lists of Ten Thrive Titles (TTT) for April and May 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 early elementary grade girls and for upper elementary grade boys. Books can be purchased and sent directly to Ethan & Choco’s Book Club by clicking on the links to our wish lists on Amazon (click here for the list for early elementary grade girls and click here for the list for upper elementary grade boys). Or, $100 can be donated via our BOOK IT! charity run registration site, which will fund an entire Read+Think+Thrive Box with art supplies for a child at CHOC.

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!

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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 JOIN US AT ECBC’s INAUGURAL CHARITY RUN!

Click here for Ethan’s plug to participate

Please join us at ECBC’s inaugural charity run, BOOK IT! Racing for Reading for Hospitalized Kids. The race is at 8am on May 28th (Memorial Day), and all participants will receive a shirt and a finisher medal. Dress up as your favorite book character for the Book Character Costume Contest!

Register at http://www.runsignup.com/runreadthrive and use code READBOOKS for a 10% discount per registration (discount ends 5/15).


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Books for Cancer Survivor Day at CHOC!

Ethan & Choco’s Book Club had a great time giving away books to oncology patients today at CHOC’s inpatient Cancer Survivors Day party! We got to use our Gifting Library Cart for the first time, and passed out everything from board books for toddlers to popular graphic novels for middle grade kids to romance and horror chapter books for teens. It was so fun to be on the giving end of things, especially on the oncology floor! #ECBC#HospitalizedKidsNeedBooksToo #ReadThinkThrive


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Thank you Alane Adams and Rise Up Foundation!

A HUGE thank you to author Alane Adams‘ Rise Up Foundation (which brings literacy to children and families facing difficult circumstances) for sponsoring our new storage space for the entire first year! We can’t wait to start moving over our 8,000 new books!! Given the small amount of storage space that CHOC Children’s can provide us at the moment, having storage space with our books in close proximity to the hospital is a necessary step for us to be able to launch our inpatient program in May. Thank you so much Rise Up and Alane, we are so grateful for your partnership and incredible support!