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Volunteer Spotlight: UnitedHealth Group
(St. Louis and Los Angeles)

This spring, Project Sunshine and UnitedHealth Group launched two new volunteer chapters, bringing the total joint chapters up to 12 nationwide! Los Angeles area volunteers are partnering with Miller Children's Hospital and volunteers in St. Louis are partnering with Shriners Hospital for Children – St. Louis, to create engaging themed craft projects, allowing patients to express their creativity and cope with the stresses of hospitalization.

In Los Angeles, Chapter Leader Heile Poticar was inspired by Project Sunshine's mission, hoping to "contribute to the wellness of every child by providing friendship while bringing smiles to the children"s faces." Heile built excitement for Project Sunshine in his office by hosting a Sending Sunshine activity where 100 employees assembled over 1,000 craft kits. They even had a bright yellow photo booth where volunteers could capture their excitement about Project Sunshine. That energy is sure to carry over to the patients and families as the chapter begins to volunteer in the hospital this month!

After making craft kits for Project Sunshine last year, St. Louis Chapter Leader Janice Duncan had the opportunity to deliver the kits her team made to the hospital, where she experienced the gratitude expressed by the hospital staff. This motivated her to continue spreading sunshine. The chapter had its first program in early May; volunteers brought the warmer weather inside with spring themed arts and crafts activities for nearly 40 children and family members in Shriners Outpatient Clinic!

Thanks to the dedication of Janice, Heile, and their enthusiastic volunteers, Project Sunshine and UnitedHealth Group will be able to reach up to an additional 80 patients and family members each month!

More Volunteer Stories of Interest

Sports Illustrated model, Damaris Lewis, volunteered for her second year as a Project Sunshine Dance Camp instructor to empower young women through dance.
Emilio Delgado, who has played Luis on Sesame Street for 40 years, brought sunshine to pediatric patients at Mount Sinai´s KidZone as part of Project Sunshine´s Book Club

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