Maryland First Lady Yumi Hogan and Denis Dunn, president, AT&T Maryland, on July 18 toured the Tracy's Kids art therapy program at The Herman & Walter Samuelson Children's Hospital at Sinai.
AT&T recently contributed $25,000 to Tracy’s Kids, a charity that uses art therapy to help children with cancer cope with the emotional impact of the disease. Master's-trained professionals armed with paints, crayons, clay, glitter and more work with the children so that they can explore their fears, and better understand their medical condition and course of treatment.
First Lady Hogan, an accomplished artist and adjunct professor at the Maryland Institute College of Art, has said that her husband's cancer diagnosis influenced her painting, and that during his treatments her works began to reflect unpredictability in nature and in life.
"Tracy's Kids provides an invaluable release for the kids, and has become the heart and soul of the pediatric oncology clinic at Sinai Hospital. Thanks to AT&T, art therapy will continue to bring support and comfort to the children in our community navigating this complicated chapter of their lives."
Tracy's Kids Chairman Matt Gerson explained, "working at the art table with other kids creates a sense of camaraderie and a recognition that they are not the only ones enduring a life-limiting illness or missing activities from soccer games to sleepovers."
Dunn added: “I am proud that we’re able to help kids hold on to their innate spirit while receiving uncomfortable, but necessary, treatments. We support programs that have a meaningful impact in the communities where our employees live and work. Without a doubt, Tracy’s Kids is having an impact, and I’m glad to join Mrs. Hogan to highlight Art Therapy and the work being done at Sinai.”
Dr. Aziza Shad, the hospital's Chair of Pediatrics, has said that it is not unusual to walk into the clinic and see kids with infusions in their arms, crayons in their hands, and smiles on their faces. She recently told WBAL-TV, "Personally, I can't even imagine how you can treat a child with cancer without using art therapy."
To learn more about Tracy's Kids, visit their website at www.tracyskids.org
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