Monthly Archives: March 2011

Pediatric Grand Rounds: April

Wow!  Where did March go?!  It’s already time to advertise Grand Round educational opportunities for April!  As a reminder, Grand Rounds are open to all interested volunteers, and are held each Thursday from 8-9 am at the following locations:

Minneapolis Campus:

Children’s Specialty Center, Room 506

2530 Chicago Ave. S.

St. Paul Campus:

John Nasseth Medical Center

Conference Room

255 N. Smith Ave.

April Sessions:

4/7:  “Update in Primary Immune Deficiency”

Presenter:  Jason Raasch, MD, Pediatric Immunologist, Midwest Immunology Clinic

4/14:  “Common Thyroid Problems”

Presenter:  Joseph Sockalosky, MD, Pediatric Endocrinologist & Director of Medical Education, Children’s Hospitals & Clinics of Minnesota

4/21:   “Mortality & Morbidity Conference”

Presenters:  TBD (various)

4/28:  “Acute Illness & Injury in Pediatric Patients:  Best Articles of 2010″

Presenter:  Sam Reid, MD, Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Children’s Hospitals & Clinics of Minnesota

No pre-registration is required!  For more information, please contact the Children’s Medical Education Office at (651) 220-6131.  We will continue to post future educational opportunities for volunteers on this site!

Volunteers Are Service Stars: John & Stella Zabel

John and Stella Zabel have been volunteering at Children’s for almost 2 years.  This PAWH team has made a difference in the hospital stays of many children.  Stella is a 7-year-old Labrador Retriever who is a Delta Society Registered Pet Partner;  she and her handler, John, visit Children’s Hospital once a week.  Recently, John and Stella came in for a special request, and it didn’t go unnoticed!


Nicole Iammatteo, Occupational Therapist, writes:

“John and Stella – I wanted to say ‘thank you’ for your work with myself and my patient today.  You are so incredibly gifted and can work well with these kiddos.  Your calm demeanor is wonderful and what you and your dog bring is a gift that I’m honored to have with me during therapy.  I would never make the gains that I do without you and Stella.  You’re incredible.”

Thank you so much, John & Stella, for lending a hand (and paw) to our pet therapy program!

Volunteers Are Service Stars: Laura Ruiz Colon

Laura Ruiz Colon

Laura Ruiz Colon

Epilepsy volunteer Laura Ruiz Colon was recently nominated for a Service Star award by the parent of a pediatric patient.  Laura demonstrated exemplary service in the areas of excellence, respect and dignity, and communication. The parent stated, “Laura took such good care of the children so that I could have a break.  Her interaction skills with them were exceptional.  Keep up the good work!”

Fantastic job, Laura!  Thank you for sharing of your time and talents at Children’s!

Volunteers Are Service Stars: Blake Hansen

There’s nothing like kind words for one of our volunteers to brighten a rainy Tuesday!  Teresa Mataloni, 8th floor RN, recently took the time to submit the following Service Star award on behalf of 8th floor volunteer Blake Hansen:


You are a wonderful volunteer; you always go above and beyond what’s expected!  Not only do you read and play multiple games with patients, but every patient that you help always has a smile on their face!  Thank you for volunteering your time–it’s greatly appreciated!”

-Teresa Mataloni, RN, 8th Floor (Children’s-Minneapolis)

Thanks so much, Blake, for all of the great work that you do!

Teresa Mataloni & Blake HansenTeresa Mataloni, RN, and Blake Hansen

Happy Child Life Week!

This week, we celebrate the work of child life specialists at Children’s and across the country!

The child life staff at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics work to make every child’s health care experience a positive one. They work with children and adolescents to minimize the stress that children can feel during hospital stays or visits to clinics, emergency rooms, radiology, or surgery areas.

Our certified child life specialists have bachelor’s or master’s degrees in fields such as child development, education, and child psychology. They specialize in working with children in health care settings, and address each child’s need to understand and cope emotionally with the medical experience.

Our child life activities associates have associate or bachelor’s degrees in child development. They focus on a child’s need for play to support normal growth and development. All child life staff members see patients in playrooms, waiting areas, and patient rooms.

We are fortunate to partner with Child Life in a variety of ways within our department, and we are grateful for the very important work that they do!

Click here for more information about Child Life services at Children’s-MN.

Click here for more information about the child life profession (courtesy of its national certifying organization, the Child Life Council).

Pictured:  Volunteer Pat Vitullo, child life specialist Jeanine Clapsaddle, and child life specialist Christi Dady blowing up balloons for Child Life Week.

Great Clips Family Resource Center & Sibling Play Area

This morning, a special naming presentation was held to acknowledge the sponsorship of Great Clips Inc., Raymond & Mary Lou Barton, & Great Clips franchises across the metro for two very important areas at Children’s-Minneapolis.  The Family Resource Center & Sibling Play Area will now officially be known as the Great Clips Family Resource Center and Great Clips Sibling Play Area.

Great Clips FRC    


 Great Clips SPA   


3 Volunteers Receive Caring Youth Awards!

On Thursday, March 17, Children’s volunteers Farhiya Ali, Sarah Baker, and Fiori Goitom were recognized at the 2011 Caring Youth Awards at the Minnetonka Community Center.

The Caring Youth Awards salute young people in grades 7-12 who have unselfishly involved themselves in causes that benefit others.  The awards are designed to honor young people whose day-to-day lifestyles reflect uncommon concern for others, as well as giving without expectation of reward or recognition.  They encourage an attitude of recognizing the needs of others and responding to these needs in a personal, caring way.

The Caring Youth event is a collaborative effort among the cities of Golden Valley, Hopkins, and Minnetonka, the Minnetonka and Hopkins school districts, and the Glen Lake Optimists of Minnetonka.

For more information on our winners, please visit the City of Minnetonka’s website.  Below are a few pictures from this fabulous event!

Fiori Farhiya

Our winners!  Fiori Goitom (L) and Farhiya Ali (R)

*Sarah Baker was, unfortunately, unable to attend.  We missed you, Sarah!

Fiori Jenna Farhiya

Fiori Goitom, volunteer coordinator/nominator Jenna Barke, & Farhiya Ali

Farhiya FamilyFarhiya & family

Fiori FamilyFiori & family

Caring Youth Program

Congratulations, Farhiya, Sarah, and Fiori!

Staff Service Star: Kris Fulgham

This Service Star award was submitted by volunteer Rachel Foley, who spent four months volunteering in the Hideaway Library.  Library volunteers take a book cart room-to-room on all inpatient floors to offer reading materials to patients. Kris Fulgham is a Program Assistant in the Family Resource Center who helps supervise library volunteers. 

Rachel Foley and Kris Fulgham

Rachel writes:

"Kris was a pleasant individual to work with. Her main focus was always on patients and patient families. Oftentimes, I saw her drop a task instantly to assist individuals visiting the Family Resource Center. Her gentle demeanor and thoughtful conversation seemed to make visitors more at ease and open about their needs. She went out of her way numerous times to make sure that visitors were comfortable and satisfied. The Family Resource Center was a great place to begin my volunteer experience at Children’s Hospital!"

Thank you, Kris, for your support of Rachel and all other volunteers!

St. Paul Campus: HELP NEEDED!

The pneumatic tube system will be disabled from March 28-April 10 to complete a major upgrade and improve service. The departments of Materials Management and Laboratory at Children’s are requesting volunteer support during this time to transport supplies throughout the hospital and Garden View Medical Building.  If you are available/interested,
please sign-up on the schedule located on “Betty The Board” in the St. Paul Volunteer Services Office.  Thank you!