#FeelGoodFriday: OrthoCarolina Employees Take part of American Heart Association’s ‘Move More Month’

Our city is full of the best people and best businesses.  Every day we learn of something spectacular that our volunteers, supporters, sponsors, and partners are doing during this crazy time and it brightens our hearts and gives us hope.  We plan to spotlight these stories through #FeelGoodFriday. Every Friday, we will spotlight something spectacular around us.  We hope it will brighten your day too! 

Today’s #FeelGoodFriday shout out is to OrthoCarolina for encouraging their employees to get moving during the month of April as part of the American Heart Association’s “Move More Month”…

While they are orthopedic experts, OrthoCarolina holds cardiovascular health near and dear to their hearts, too. April was the American Heart Association’s “Move More Month,” and the team at OrthoCarolina knows how important it is to stay active as we move through these tough times together.

It all started with every parent’s worst fear. One day, OrthoCarolina’s CEO Dr. Bruce Cohen received a jarring phone call – his son had gone into cardiac arrest on the soccer field. Thankfully, his son was saved by CPR administered by a trainer and the use of an AED (automatic external defibrillator) that was on site. 

Since that fateful day on the soccer field, Dr. Cohen and OrthoCarolina have been committed to supporting the AHA’s mission to reduce heart disease and stroke to improve our community’s long-term health. 

To encourage their team to get moving, OrthoCarolina held a four-week team member fitness challenge. The goal was for every participant to complete 150 minutes of exercise each week through at-home workouts, walks, dance parties and more. #MoveMore with OrthoCarolina and the AHA in April was aimed at clearing minds, reducing stress and improving physical and mental health.  OrthoCarolina had more than 130 Team Members collectively exercised 1,661 hours during the month of April!

In addition to the OC Team Member Challenge, 52 Physicians and 29 Physician Assistants have created their own fitness challenge!

Way to go Team OrthoCarolina!

Jersey Mike’s Donations Total Over $20,000 for Pediatric Cancer Research

We got a really nice surprise in the mail this week… thank you sub lovers!  The month of March turned out a little different than expected in many ways, but that didn’t stop you from supporting Jersey Mike’s Subs and ISF!  We appreciate everyone who donated at our greater Charlotte area Jersey Mike’s during the month which came out to $21,606 for ISF and pediatric cancer research!  We are incredibly grateful for your support.  We are incredibly grateful for Jersey Mike’s support!

Don’t forget, order takeout from the Jersey Mike’s mobile app!  You can choose free delivery and it will show up on your door step!  Help us support a partner who does so much for communities around the nation!   


Three cheers for volunteers! Not only do we appreciate you… we miss you!

April 19-25 is #VolunteerAppreciationWeek and we are grateful for every volunteer (little and big) who contribute to make our mission of fighting rare pediatric cancer a reality to #beatgrowlive. With stay at home orders, we miss seeing all of our volunteers and physically working by your side. We absolutely can’t function without the hundreds of amazing individuals who support our program. Our volunteers help out with events, pack bags, prepare & serve meals, hand out medals, develop run schedules, donate talents, hours and time. And so much more.

Thank you to all our volunteers, below are just a few we featured throughout Volunteer Appreciation Week!

Lending Tree

We love our corporate volunteer groups who volunteer together! Team building while doing something good. During our 2019 race our KidsZone Sponsor, LendingTree, volunteered as a team in the Kids Zone. They brought with them piggy banks and helped all the kiddos decorate to help spread the message about money management. Thank you Lending Tree for all your volunteerism, we see how much you do in the Charlotte community and we appreciate you!

Volunteer Cheryl

Meet Cheryl. This sweet lady has been a dedicated ISF volunteer for years. And when we say years, almost since the beginning! She has volunteered in almost every capacity at many functions and events… thank you Cheryl for sticking with us for so long! We simply can’t continue striving for change for kids with rare cancers without you!

Sisters Elizabeth & Emma Kate

These two sisters have volunteered for ISF since they were little. Elizabeth & Emma Kate lived down the street from Isabella and watched her cancer fight ultimately take her life… they were personally touched and inspired to do what they can to help other kids fighting cancer ever since. They recruit their friends, they spread awareness and they work events throughout the year. These two not only volunteer for ISF, but have been involved and volunteer with several groups including Arthritis Foundation, RedCross & Best Buddies through their high school and volunteer opportunities through their church. 

We love when young people are drawn to make a difference! Thank you Elizabeth & Emma Kate for your passion and dedication for ISF. And thank you to all your friends for joining in on the fun too!

Volunteer Julie

This is Julie! For us to know that we have so many consistent and reliable volunteers helps us breathe just a little easier! We are confident every event will run smoothly because of individuals like Julie. She has volunteered in many capacities from working events, ticket sales and helping with our auction year after year. She was also on deck to volunteer her photography skills and talent at this years coffee events before they were called off. Thank you Julie for always being right there and willing when we need you!

Marvin Ridge ISF Club

Meet the Marvin Ridge ISF Club… a charity club that several passionate girls developed at Marvin Ridge High (Union County, NC).  The club has 32 members with a faculty advisor and is dedicated to charity work.  Since their inception they have volunteered at many events including our September 5k/10k and our October Pumpkin Charity Ball.  We love the initiative the members put behind this club and know if there is a volunteer need, they are just a phone call away!  

“With our club we have been able to spread awareness about the Foundation and the incredible things they do. We informed all of our members about their mission as well as the benefits and impact to our local community. As a club we strived to help the Foundation whether it be volunteering at events or just spreading information around the school. We also spent time volunteering for other local charities that the Foundation helps to support that needed assistance like the Ronald McDonald House.   Before the virus we were selling friendship bracelets to our friends and family. When we are safely back in school we hope to resume sales and plan to donate the proceeds to the Foundation.   In the future we are planning on continuing to help ISF with their volunteer needs as well as other local charities that help to support kids and their families fighting cancer.”

Thank you Marvin Ridge ISF Club, we love the service you provide and the example you set for others your age!

#FeelGoodFriday: OneBlood & Their Partners Pour Blood Sweat & Tears into CLT!

Our city is full of the best people and best businesses.  Every day we learn of something spectacular that our volunteers, supporters, sponsors, and partners are doing during this crazy time and it brightens our hearts and gives us hope.  We plan to spotlight these stories through #FeelGoodFriday. Every Friday, we will spotlight something spectacular around us.  We hope it will brighten your day too! 

Today’s #FeelGoodFriday shout out goes out to OneBlood who has been working their tails off to help make sure our local hospitals have blood product supplies during the pandemic.  And also a shoutout to all the partners and donors who stepped in to make that supply possible.  If you’re healthy and able to donate blood products, make sure to set up your appointment.

Early into the Coronavirus crisis there was great concern surrounding the availability of blood for our hospitals and their patients.  As businesses and organizations in our region and across the country began to shut their doors and stay at home orders were announced, blood drive cancelations started pouring in.  The level of cancelations was unprecedented.  We began to inform our hospitals of a potential blood shortage. 

The hospitals we serve immediately answered the call in a big way.  Atrium booked blood drives at 11 hospital locations every single week in April, and are continuing some into May.  They didn’t just give a place to park the bus, they had donors show up in droves.  Since March 23rd Atrium’s locations alone have collected over 1,300 units of blood.   The team at Atrium is literally pouring their blood, sweat, and tears into this community.  That’s enough to make you feel good every day, but even more so on #FeelGoodFriday!

OneBlood is also part of an important advancement in the fight against Covid-19 by collecting COVID-19 convalescent plasma (CCP).  This plasma is collected from donors who have completely recovered from Coronavirus.  Their plasma contains an antibody that when transfused, can help aid in the recovery of patients currently suffering from Coronavirus.  

Oneblood’s first CCP collection happened on Friday and one unit has already been sent to a local hospital supporting a patient in need!  We are so proud to be partners with Oneblood and appreciate them working their tails off for our community! 

A few ways you can help:

❤️Learn more about Oneblood’s convalescent plasma program and eligibility requirements

❤️Learn more about hosting a blood drive in the future

❤️Schedule a blood donation appointment

Dear JEM Project: Thank You for Donating in My Sister’s Name

Tonight our last ‘Thank You’ letter giving thanks for The JEM Project’s $250,000 donation to ISF is from Madison’s Sister, Riley.  Short, sweet and exactly what we all are hoping for… our dream of no more cancer comes true.  

Dear JEM Project, 

I am Riley and I’m Madison Fedak’s sister. You don’t know how much it means to me that you donated your money to the Isabella Santos Foundation to help fund osteosarcoma research in my sister’s name. Thank you so much for putting upon yourself this selfless deed. Once again thank you for donating so that in the near future my dream will come true no child will be diagnosed with cancer ever again.

With love,

Riley Fedak, Madison’s Sister


Isabella Santos Foundation Receives $250,000 Gift by The JEM Foundation (Isabella’s Mommy)

Dear JEM Project: Your Donation is Giving Children Fighting Cancer Time (Isabella’s Grandma)

Dear JEM Project: Thank You for Being the Team Who Kept Madison’s & ISF’s Mission on Course (Madison’s Mom)

Dear JEM Project: Thank You for Your Contribution To Our Goal of Finding a Cure (Madison’s Dad)