What We Do

Changing the way people see healthcare.

Project Sunshine brings volunteer-led programming to pediatric patients and their families in a variety of medical settings. We recognize the tremendous weight of managing a child’s illness or injury, whether it requires short-term or long-term care. Every child with a medical challenge is unique, and our programs seek to adapt to the individual needs of each child.

Project Sunshine’s mission is simple: Bringing joy and play to pediatric patients.

We do this by connecting volunteers to pediatric patients and their families. For over 20 years, Project Sunshine volunteers have brought joy and play directly to pediatric patients through in-person programming with our network of hospitals and medical facility partners across the country.

In 2020, the pandemic closed hospitals to outside visitors, and children became isolated. In support of our mission, Project Sunshine created the new TelePlay program, to continue to support patients and their families. This program brings play and activities to children via Zoom sessions with Project Sunshine volunteers.

Additionally, Project Sunshine’s volunteers pack Activity Kits, to support pediatric patients. Each kit includes developmentally specific activities as well as a blank journal for creative expression, note taking, and thoughts of the day.

Our Programs

Our programs brings patients and volunteers together in-hospitals through creative arts activities and other opportunities for social interaction and learning. Our TelePlay program provides remote games and activities for patients via Zoom. Volunteers act as companions, or as we say, ‘Sunshine Sidekicks,’ to superhero patients battling the isolation of the hospital setting.
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Pediatric patient and volunteer smile while making Valentine's Day heart themed arts and crafts

Sending Sunshine

‘Sending Sunshine’ creates opportunities for volunteers to assemble interactive craft kits and sew ‘Surgi Dolls’ that are then distributed to hospitals nationwide. These supports entertain children during stressful and lonely times, provide needed distraction, and help hospital staff build trust with young patients.
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Pediatric patient holds up the Super Hero Bear they created as part of arts and crafts programming

We show hospitalized children that the sun still shines for them.

3,000,000+

Children are hospitalized in the US each year

200,000+

Children and families receive Project Sunshine's supports

425+

Hospital partners to bring smiles to children in need

  • Pediatric patient and volunteer smiling during Project Sunshine Israel program

    Being a child is not easy, but being a sick child – this requires coping. Hundreds of volunteers help sick children and their families cope with illness with one simple tool: good will.

    Meir Medical Center

    Kfar Saba, Israel
  • Pediatric patient and caregiver smile in front of winter themed photo booth backdrop

    If my daughter is having a really tough day, we pull out the calendar and point to the next Project Sunshine program. Once we arrive, I can actually breathe.

    Melissa R.

    Parent
  • Two volunteers smiling in a room full of corporate volunteers who are assembling craft kits for pediatric patients

    Project Sunshine has been one of our nonprofit partners since 2010. Project Sunshine has provided exceptional service when organizing and executing corporate volunteer opportunities. Employees constantly praise the overall experience, often mentioning how rewarding and fun the projects are. It is one of our most solicited volunteer opportunities.

    Anthony Sanchez

    Manager, Corporate Social Responsibility, American Express
  • Pediatric patient smiles while making arts and crafts

    The program helps to reduce all the stresses of a hospital setting. It enhances the overall morale and emotional well-being of everyone involved in the healing process of our patients and families during their stay at the hospital. We love Project Sunshine!

    Kristen H.

    MS, Certified Child Life Specialist
  • Pediatric patient in wheelchair makes arts and crafts while volunteer looks on

    Sitting with a family at the hospital and sharing a laugh puts everything into perspective; it teaches you to appreciate the beauty of small moments and the wonderful privilege it is to be a part of someone's healing process.

    Mariely

    College Chapter Leader

Bring sunshine to your hospital today!

We support Child Life Specialists, Social Workers, and other hospital staff with programs, led by our trained volunteers, that help young patients cope with the stress of their medical challenges.

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