Although this press release comes to us all the way from Irvine, California, it is definitely still close to home.
Wienerschnitzel teamed up with Roc Solid Foundation last Friday, August 9th, in order to build a custom playset for a pair of siblings with cancer, living in Bellingham. The Roc Solid Foundation was founded in 2009 by Eric Newman, the Chief Play Instructor, who is a pediatric cancer survivor.
Their flagship program, the Play it Forward, supports families through the power of play. Besides playsets, they also remodels bathrooms and bedrooms for safe, supported play.
See below for the full press release and to learn more about Eliza and Oliver:
In 2018 after Eliza, 4, was diagnosed with optic glioma, which caused her to go blind in her right eye, her younger brother Oliver, 2, was tested for genetic deficiencies and was diagnosed with a very rare, very aggressive form of leukemia for which he received a bone marrow transplant.
Representatives from Wienerschnitzel’s corporate office and Seattle-area franchisees will volunteer alongside Roc Solid team members on Friday morning, while the siblings and their family are treated to a limousine ride, breakfast, and an activity of their choice.
When they return home at 12:30 p.m., the children will be surprised with a new playset, followed by a Wienerschnitzel lunch of hot dogs, corn dogs and chili dogs, with family and friends. The playset allows for Eliza and Oliver to have fun freely in the comfort of their own home, as the children’s weakened immune systems prevent them from being able to play in most public settings. This backyard playground will also provide Eliza and Oliver’s parents with much-needed peace of mind.
“The look of surprise when these children first see their playsets resembles the purest form of joy,” said Karen Galardi, Corporate Community Relations & Giving for Wienerschnitzel. “We’re honored to partner with The Roc Solid Foundation to provide a safe haven for Oliver and Eliza to play and, most importantly, to escape their diagnoses and feel hope for the future.”
“The treatments these kids undergo are intense, leaving them with little time and energy to enjoy playing like most kids do on a daily basis,” says Newman. “It’s our goal to give hope to these children by allowing them to be carefree for the day; that’s what hope looks like.”