An anonymous donor gave $1 million to the Arkansas Children’s Hospital to be used at its Jonesboro-based Kim and Chris Fowler Center, a clinic that treats children, ACH President and Chief Executive Officer Marcy Doderer said Wednesday (Sept. 25) in Jonesboro. Another $1.5 million was donated to the clinic from the Sunderland Foundation to expand programs and services. The anonymous donation will be divided with half being used to expand the clinic and the rest to be placed into an operations endowment.
The donation are part of ACH’s five year Campaign for a Healthier Tomorrow, a $250 million fundraising campaign by ACH to improve the health outcomes for children in the state. About $200 million has been raised so far. The Kim and Chris Fowler Center was built last year after the local businessman and his wife donated $1.5 million towards the purchase of the clinic building.
“Philanthropy drives innovation. It funds the journey to a healthier tomorrow … the children of Arkansas need you,” ACH’s Foundation President and chief development officer Fred Scarborough said during a meeting at the Jonesboro Country Club.
There are 710,000 children in the state, and about 156,000 live in poverty, Doderer said. Arkansas ranks around 40th among all states in child health outcomes, she added. The Jonesboro area has the third largest concentration of children in Arkansas.
“A zip code may mean more than a genetic code in determining a child’s health outcome,” she said.
Earlier this week ACH officials announced that Valero would donate $1 million and longtime supporter Stuart Cobb would donate $500,000 to support statewide dental outreach programs at Arkansas Children’s.
“These investments from leading advocates are key to advancing child health,”Scarborough said. We are so grateful to Valero as a leading corporate citizen and to Stuart as a committed champion for children.”
The Arkansas Children’s Dental Outreach Program includes mobile dental clinics and the school-based Dental Sealant Program.
Arkansas Children’s Mobile Dental Clinics include four state-of-the-art vans providing dental services to patients across the state through five regional hubs. The vans will serve the following regional areas: Central, Northwest, Southwest, Southeast and Northeast. Each regional location will collaborate with local dentists and employ customized solutions to the communities’ needs.
Since 2009, the Dental Outreach Program has provided 12,500 dental exams through mobile dental clinics, screened 31,400 children and provided fluoride applications and applied 73,000 dental sealants through the Dental Sealant Program. Throughout the last decade, supporters like Delta Dental, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkansas, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkoma and Walmart have invested in Arkansas Children’s Dental Outreach Program and provided dental support services around the state.
ACH board member Belinda Shults has given an additional $500,000 to the Belinda H. and Robert L. Shults Endowed Chair in Injury Prevention at Arkansas Children’s. This endowment supports the continued work of the Arkansas Children’s Injury Prevention Center through education and advocacy for the safety of children across Arkansas.
Endowed chairs provide Arkansas Children’s the ability to recruit top leaders in the medical field who can provide the best care for patients. An endowed chair remains one of the highest honors Arkansas Children’s can bestow on its most distinguished physicians. Those named to a chair are among the most highly regarded scientists, practitioners and professors in their fields.
“Supporting Arkansas Children’s is one of the best investments one can make,” said Belinda Shults. “I’m proud to know this gift will support the mission of Arkansas Children’s in perpetuity.”