Daisy Days: Child Life Program

PHILADELPHIA -- CHOP's Child Life Program is one of the largest in the country. It's an innovative program created back in 1951.

Caire Gruber is a Child Life Specialist.

"The hospital environment for kids can be really threatening, and it's a change in their routine," she said.

Claire added, "So the goal of our role is really to make sure that kids have an overall good experience in the hospital, and that they're learning about their illness, while also feeling comfortable, and enjoying their time here.

Philanthropic events like Daisy Days make it possible for programs like this to thrive and grow.

Child Life Specialist Courtney Kissel said. "Fundraisers such as this to provide us with the materials that we need to provide all of these wonderful services to our patients and their families."

Each Daisy Days campaign supports a specific department in the hospital. This year's beneficiary is the oncology department.

Dr. Stephen Hunger is the Chief of Oncology and Director for Center for Childhood Cancer Research.

He says, "The oncology department takes care of children, adolescents, and young adults with all forms of cancer."

Daisy Days is instrumental in developing groundbreaking treatment and therapeutic care with the ultimate goal curing cancer in every patient.

"A child may have an 85% chance of being cured, that's great. But it doesn't mean too much to the parents of the 15% who aren't cured. So our goal is to work toward the day where everybody can be cured," said Dr. Hunger.

While the CHOP staff is instrumental in the healing process, the true stars shine brightest on days like this.

Courtney says, "Kids want to be kids, and they want to play, and we see that just at this event today. How many kids are here, and having a good time despite what's happening."