Community Blood Drives to Honor Isabella Santos – March 9

In partnership with the Isabella Santos Foundation and Community Blood Center of the Carolinas

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Feb. 26, 2019 – The Isabella Santos Foundation (ISF) and Community Blood Center of the Carolinas (CBCC) will be teaming up to host several community blood drives in memory of Isabella Santos on Saturday, March 9.

The following blood drives are being held on what would have been Santos’ 14th birthday to honor her life and legacy:

  • Isabella Santos Center in Ballantyne

12239 N. Community House Road, Charlotte

7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

*There will also be a bloodmobile parked in front of the Isabella Santos Center

  • Overture Cotswold

4830 Randolph Road, Charlotte

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

*Hosted by the mother (Stephanie Forman) of Isabella’s best friend

  • Firebirds/Jersey Mike’s (Stonecrest)

7716 Rea Road, Charlotte

10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

*Two bloodmobiles will be located in the parking lot across from Firebirds and Jersey Mike’s

  • At Four of CBCC’s Donor Centers from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.:
    • Charlotte Center: 4447 South Blvd.
    • Concord Center: 363 Church Street North, Suite 170
    • Gastonia Center: 2524 East Franklin Blvd, Suite E
    • Hickory Center: 2217 Highway 70 SE

CBCC will also be raffling off $100 gift cards to donors who schedule their March 9 appointment prior to the day of the drive. For questions or to make an appointment for any of these blood drives, visit here or call 1-888-59BLOOD.

Isabella Santos passed away at age seven from a five-year battle with neuroblastoma, a rare type of pediatric cancer. During her treatment, she received several blood and platelet transfusions. According to CBCC, cancer patients are the No. 1 recipients of blood products. One local children’s hospital alone requires nearly 300 units of red blood cells and more than 100 units of platelets each month.

“Community Blood Center of the Carolinas has been an incredible partner and supporter throughout Isabella’s cancer journey and with our efforts to carry on her legacy to impact the lives of children with cancer,” said Erin Santos, executive director and president of the Isabella Santos Foundation. “We appreciate the community coming together on March 9 in memory of Isabella and to support local patients who need life-saving blood.”

All donors at these March 9 blood drives will receive an Isabella Santos Center logo purple blanket, Lifesaving Journey shirt, a Cancer Messed With discount card and a Jersey Mike’s cookie. In addition, donors will be entered to win the following giveaways: Wells Fargo Championship Weekly Ticket Book gift certificate for two; John Hardy earrings in 8K yellow gold and sterling silver; Nothing Bundt Cakes; American Girls Doll (two winners); Firebirds gift card; $100 iTunes Gift Card; Y2 Yoga Gift Card and more.

“We value our relationship with the Isabella Santos Foundation, which is the manifestation of Isabella’s legacy of community support and caring,” said Martin Grable, president and CEO of CBCC. “It is very rewarding to partner with such an ambitious and highly successful group of people dedicated to raising awareness of rare childhood cancers. We encourage the public to make a difference by rolling up their sleeves and giving blood in memory of Isabella [Santos] and to save local lives.”

About Community Blood Center of the Carolinas

Community Blood Center of the Carolinas is the local nonprofit, community-based blood center and the primary blood supplier to the region’s hospitals. CBCC collects blood and blood products from volunteer donors in the community to return to the community at the lowest possible cost consistent with the highest possible standards. CBCC is a member of America’s Blood Centers, North America’s largest network of community-based, independent blood centers that provide more than 50 percent of the nation’s blood supply. For more information, visit oneblood.org/cbcc/.

For more information on hosting a blood drive or donating blood in your area, visit www.cbcc.us or call 1-888-59BLOOD. Follow Community Blood Center of the Carolinas on Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/BloodCenter, on Instagram https://instagram.com/cbccarolinas/ and on Twitterwww.twitter.com/CBCCarolinas.

About Isabella Santos Foundation

The Isabella Santos Foundation (ISF) is a 501(c)3 childhood cancer foundation dedicated to raising funds for research for rare pediatric cancers, and charities that directly impact the lives of children with cancer. ISF was founded in honor of Isabella Santos from Charlotte, N.C. who lost her battle against neuroblastoma. ISF is committed to improving rare pediatric cancer treatment options in an effort to increase the survival rate of kids with cancer so they can live their dreams. ISF has donated over $3 million to date to expand the scope of pediatric cancer research and treatment, and to fill various needs surrounding childhood cancers.

For more information, visit www.isabellasantosfoundation.org  or follow ISF on Facebook (www.facebook.com/IsabellaSantosFoundation), Instagram (www.instagram.com/theisfoundation), Twitter (www.twitter.com/TheISFoundation) and LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/company/isabella-santos-foundation/)

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CONTACT:

Jenni Walker – Walker PR Group – 980-339-8041-office/704-649-6571-cell

jenni@walkerprgroup.com

Isabella Santos Foundation’s Executive Director Receives Women in Business Honor

“Don’t let something horrible in your life define you. When people meet me they say, I can’t believe you have a child who passed away from cancer, and I take pride in that. Because it doesn’t define who I am. It’s just part of who I am.”

Congratulations to our always real and never boring leader, Erin Santos, for being a recipient of the Charlotte Business Journal’s Women in Business award last night. She might have cussed a bit on stage and she rarely apologizes for ‘being aggressive’ for those fighting cancer… but we are so proud that she won’t stop pushing the needle for kids fighting cancer.

DWTS Blog #4: Why did I sign up for this again?

Written by Erin Santos, ISF Executive Director & President

My current state

Well, here we are.  Dancing With the Stars tickets are sold out, votes are rolling in and by this time next week, I will be back to a normal life.  All these weeks I have been saying that I am not too nervous about the actual dancing part.  That’s now a lie.  The anxiety is setting in and my stomach is in knots.  I didn’t start the week out that way – but as each day passed… the knot begins to grow.

Saturday – my Mom is in town and the plan was for her and Sophia to join me for dance practice.  In true Santos children style, they are bored with every cool experience I’m a part of because they have grown numb to it, so she chooses a morning on her iPad instead of heading to the ballet to watch.  Whatever.  My mom joins me and sits quietly in the seats and Juwan and I kick through the moves.  I notice she is taping a couple of the segments on her phone which I plan to watch later.  Turns out watching it as soon as we get in the car scares the shit out of me because some of the moves I’m doing just look straight stupid.  Yikes.  I’m two weeks out.  I’m better in my head than I am on stage.  

Tuesday – our normal Tuesday practice and we are fixing small pieces that aren’t working.  I’m still working on adding that flare that feels completely dumb when I do it, but I know it comes across better on stage.  I can tell Juwan is wanting more from me and I’m having trouble giving it for some reason.  It just feels weird at times.  We have a couple of tricks that we practice a couple of times to really get the feel of them.  One of the tricks is killing me and I’m not getting it right.  I’m finally nailing the backflip but I’m still doing it in tennis shoes.  We still don’t have shoes and I should be in them by now.  I’m stressing.

The AMAZING Whitley Hamlin

Friday – 12:30.  The AMAZING Whitley Hamlin (@thequeencitystyle) who has graciously agreed to help style me for the event with the help of Neiman Marcus meets us at Southpark to try on some gala looks.  My traditional look is a little short and a little tight and sometimes a little unprofessional and I love that she is taking me out of my comfort zone.  The first dress I try on takes an army to put in on me.  I’m not kidding… it’s a damn scuba suit and I almost pass out twice.  I get it on and take a look in the mirror.  It’s elegant and sophisticated and I love it.  It’s never anything I would ever wear, try on or even buy.  I turn and look at Whitley and my Director of Marketing, Rachel and it feels like I found the perfect wedding dress on the first try.  I try on about 10 more but I keep coming back to the same first dress.  I think we have a winner.  I also need to drop all alcohol, bread, sugar, and calories in the next week to pull this thing off.  2:15 practice time comes and goes and I’m super late.  The videographer from the Ballet is there to shoot some of our practice for our gala video and it freezes me up a little.  Why am I freezing up?  It’s just a week away!  I do however have a new haircut that is making me feel like a new woman – but having a stranger in the room is screwing with me.  Of course, when the camera starts rolling, I see Juwan transform into the performer he is meant to be.  He’s insanely good and at that moment I know he will carry me through this because he is professional.  He’s the best.  I have to feed off his energy.

Saturday – Just breezing through my email and see an email from the Ballet.  Turns out that Juwan and I are the show closers.  I may vomit.

Sunday – 6 more days.  After watching the video of us performing, Juwan levels with me and lets me know there are some parts that just aren’t working.  Here’s the thing.  I have to do a cartwheel twice in my performance.  I know what you are thinking… it’s a cartwheel.  But ask yourself honestly when the last time you DID a cartwheel.  Not just a cartwheel in your living room, but a cartwheel where you have to grab the back of someone’s thigh and do a cartwheel over the front of him.  Oh, and make it look graceful and point your toes and you are 42.  Juwan asks me to do a couple of cartwheels just on the stage to see if we can figure this out.  Cartwheel number one – I pull the back of my thigh and my groin right out of the gate.  I pull it so bad that I want to spend the entire rest of the practice in the tub with Epson salt.  Instead, Juwan keeps making me do them.  He is showing me how to do them with his legs that are like 5 feet long and he looks like a damn starfish but with a touch of a ballet dancer.  I’m not getting any better at them but it’s probably because I’m 42 freaking years old!  Ugh.  Okay, homework for the week – figure out how to be more flexible and also do 100 cartwheels.  Side note: the other women I’m competing against next Saturday… one is an ex-college gymnast and the other is an ex-Chicago Bulls cheerleader.  Bonus.  They are probably kicking out cartwheels for breakfast.  We run through the music a couple of times, videotaping then reviewing.  I’m gonna throw up.

My week ahead is dancing every day, finding shoes that won’t kill me, practicing in my actual dance outfit, dress fittings, dress rehearsals, primping, and anxiety.  God bless anyone that has to come in contact with me this week.  I’m going to be a disaster.  

For goodness sake – please go out and vote for me.  One vote is $1, and I would love the support this week.  

Go to gala.charlotteballet.org and select “Erin and Juwan”.  

Erin’s DWTS Blog #1

Erin’s DWTS Blog #2

Erin’s DWTS Blog #3

 

EAT A SUB: Help Isabella Santos Foundation

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Feb. 21, 2019 – The Isabella Santos Foundation (ISF) is joining forces with 39 Jersey Mike’s Subs restaurants throughout the greater Charlotte area for the 9th Annual March “Month of Giving” campaign to raise funds for pediatric cancer research. During the month of March, customers can make a donation to the Isabella Santos Foundation at any participating Jersey Mike’s restaurants. Proceeds from all cookie sales at the participating Jersey Mike’s restaurants during the month of March will also go back to the Isabella Santos Foundation.

The campaign will culminate in Jersey Mike’s “Day of Giving” on Wednesday, March 27, when these 39 local Jersey Mike’s restaurants will give 100 percent of the day’s sales – not just profit – to the Isabella Santos Foundation.

On Day of Giving, local Jersey Mike’s owners and operators throughout the country will donate resources and every single dollar that comes into more than 170 different charities including hospitals, youth organizations, food banks and more.

In 2018, the greater Charlotte area Jersey Mike’s locations raised more than $135,000 for the campaign.

“Last year’s nationwide Month of Giving initiative raised more than $6 million for charities making a big difference in their local communities, and this year, we hope to raise even more,” said Peter Cancro, Jersey Mike’s founder and CEO, who started the company when he was only 17 years old. “From the early days, it’s just kind of what we’ve always done — give to give, as they say. This March, I invite you to visit Jersey Mike’s to help support an important cause in your neighborhood.”

For a list of the 39 participating restaurants in the greater Charlotte area and for more information, visit isabellasantosfoundation.org/jersey-mikes-mog/. Everyone is invited to come into a local Jersey Mike’s restaurant and enjoy a delicious sub meal.

Last year’s Month of Giving campaign raised more than $6 million for 170 local charities nationwide.  Since 2010, Jersey Mike’s locations throughout the country have raised more than $34 million for worthy local charities and distributed more than 2 million free sub sandwiches to help numerous causes.

For more information about Jersey Mike’s Subs Month of Giving, please visit:  www.jerseymikes.com/mog.

About Jersey Mike’s Subs

Jersey Mike’s, a fast-casual sub sandwich franchise with more than 1,500 locations open and under development nationwide, believes that making a sub sandwich and making a difference can be one and the same.  Jersey Mike’s offers A Sub Above®, serving authentic fresh sliced subs on freshly baked bread – the same recipe it started within 1956 – and is passionate about giving back to its local communities.  For more information, please visit www.jerseymikes.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/jerseymikes) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/jerseymikes). 

About Isabella Santos Foundation

The Isabella Santos Foundation (ISF) is a 501(c)3 childhood cancer foundation dedicated to raising funds for research for rare pediatric cancers, and charities that directly impact the lives of children with cancer. ISF was founded in honor of Isabella Santos from Charlotte, N.C. who lost her battle against neuroblastoma. ISF is committed to improving rare pediatric cancer treatment options in an effort to increase the survival rate of kids with cancer so they can live their dreams. ISF has donated over $3 million to date to expand the scope of pediatric cancer research and treatment, and to fill various needs surrounding childhood cancers. 

For more information, visit www.isabellasantosfoundation.org  or follow ISF on Facebook (www.facebook.com/IsabellaSantosFoundation), Instagram (www.instagram.com/theisfoundation), Twitter (www.twitter.com/TheISFoundation) and LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/company/isabella-santos-foundation/)

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CONTACT:

Jenni Walker – Walker PR Group – 980-339-8041-office/704-649-6571-cell

jenni@walkerprgroup.com

Cancer Journey Leads to Brotherly Bond

Cancer Journey Leads to Brotherly Bond When 10-year-old Dyson was diagnosed with AML Leukemia last June, he never imagined that his cancer journey would bring him a new best friend. On September 10, 2018, the lives of Dyson and KJ Brent, a wide receiver for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, changed forever. That is the day […]