200 children with cancer and other serious illnesses, along with their families, were treated to an all-star baseball extravaganza on Wednesday July 29th. It was an evening at Dodger’s Stadium where they were treated to an exciting pro baseball game between the LA Dodgers and the Oakland Athletics.
Every time jumbo-tron asked the crowd to make some noise, Dodger Stadium erupted in raucous cheers. But the Chai Lifeline section, where the sick children, their siblings, parents and counselors sat, was significantly louder than the rest. This group was not going to let chronic pediatric illness hold them back.
The evening is a highly anticipated favorite among Chai Lifeline families. They get to enjoy excellent baseball, feast on hotdogs generously sponsored by Jeff’s Gourmet Hotdogs, and receive baseballs, Dodger lanyards, “Chai Lifeline Loves the LA Dodgers” lunchboxes, sweet treats and more at every inning.
As the Dodgers and the Oakland Athletics provided excitement on the field, Chai Lifeline’s enthusiastic team of volunteers got the families “pumped up,” creating almost as much action in the stands as there was on the field. With their unlimited energy, the volunteers barely sat for more than a few minutes as they moved from family to family ensuring that they were having a good time.
Chai Lifeline’s partnership with the Los Angeles Dodgers has flourished over 15 years, growing from a small delegation of families to its current size. Dodger Night is one of two-dozen programs and services that bring joy and laughter back into the lives of families whose lives have been irrevocably disrupted by pediatric illness. All Chai Lifeline programs and services are offered at no cost to participants.
Randi Grossman, Chai Lifeline’s West Coast Regional Director, gushed over the roar of the crowd, “This is just one of dozens of recreational and social events we run throughout the year for our children and families. It is powerful to watch how the camaraderie, set against the backdrop of Dodger baseball, helps dispel the loneliness and isolation these families feel. We are so honored to partner with the Dodgers and Jeff’s again this year to make this happen!”