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For the month of March, Children’s Wish Foundation is celebrating every Child Life Specialist that has made a difference in the lives of children and families around the world. On behalf of Wish kids everywhere, we want to thank each and every Child Life Specialist for all that they’ve done to help children face their illness head on. In the event of Child Life month, what better way to celebrate their hard work and dedication than to feature a few of the Child Life Specialists that we work with on a daily basis. Reading their stories has brought tears to our faces and joy to our hearts. Enjoy!
My name is Mitzi and I have been a child life specialist for over 24 years! I hold a Master’s Degree in Education with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. I did my internship at Johns Hopkins and worked at the Ruth and Billy Graham Children’s Center for 2 years, all of the rest have been at the Children’s Hospital in Greenville, South Carolina. I have worked in many areas from inpatient (infants to teens), PICU, and am currently the child life specialist in the Outpatient Center Specialty Clinics. I am married with 2 daughters, live on a farm and love animals!
I knew I wanted to work with children and absolutely loved medical environment. I watched my friends twins go through a prep program for surgery for a tonsillectomy. I saw the difference it made post-op with them and I knew I had to go into this profession. I loved the aspect of play and helping a child cope with an illness.
I cannot say enough about Children’s Wish Foundation. It is my #1 go to for Wishes for kids! Children’s Wish goes the extra mile with programs for kids under the age of 3 years old, where they can pick from a list of items and yet offer them a chance for another wish at a later age, which I think it incredible! I absolutely love the giveback to the hospitals that they do in the sense of small prizes and offerings each month. It really shows that the foundation is one of giving, not only kids with patients with chronic illnesses, but children I see daily can too.
Children’s Wish Foundation comes and performs our Mother’s Day Shopping Spree and it is very well received! This is something that we did together years ago and it is now like a tradition with our hospital and Children’s Wish. They also provide items for our Father’s Day Shopping Spree, which too is incredible for the kids to shop for their Dad! I talk to many families who have had wishes through Children’s Wish and all of them say what a wonderful experience it has been and how the staff goes the extra mile to make their wish so extra special beyond their dreams!
As a Child Life Specialist, I love being a part of a team that is dedicated to helping kids and families with their illness rather it is a simple visit to the doctor’s office to coping with a chronic illness. This is my passion and my love!