As the statewide Campaign for a Healthier Tomorrow comes to a close later this month, Arkansas Children’s Foundation received a $1 million gift from Melanie and Edwin Wells to establish an endowment supporting the CEO Strategic Initiatives Fund at Arkansas Children’s.
“Melanie and Edwin Wells have a deep commitment to improving child health and their community,” said Fred Scarborough, president of the Arkansas Children’s Foundation. “Endowments, such as theirs, fuel long-term strategic growth and help deliver the best possible care to the children of Arkansas. We are incredibly thankful for this gift and their longtime support.”
The Wells are longtime supporters of Arkansas Children’s and are active members of the Log A Load For Kids of Arkansas chapter. Since the chapter began in 1991, local volunteer fundraisers have raised more than $10 million for Arkansas Children’s, investing largely in endowments, supporting emergency services and advancing pediatric cardiovascular care.
“Endowments are an important investment for any organization,” said Edwin Wells. “We are proud to give a gift that will exist in perpetuity and ensure the future of Arkansas Children’s.”
The Melanie and Edwin Wells Strategic Endowment is designed to support small and large projects. In recent years, the CEO Strategic Initiatives Fund has fueled innovations and advanced key initiatives such as statewide clinics, research and clinical excellence at Arkansas Children’s.
Expanding endowed chairs, research and clinical programs is critical to advancing pediatric care. Since the Campaign for a Healthier Tomorrow began in 2015, four new endowed chairs have been established at Arkansas Children’s.
Arkansas Children’s has 40 endowed chairs and 329 individually endowed funds with a market value of more than $443 million. The Campaign for a Healthier Tomorrow is a $250 million statewide initiative designed to support Arkansas Children’s Hospital.
By most national measures, Arkansas is one of the least healthy states ranking 40 out of 50 in child health and well-being.