Chiricahua Community Health Centers plans ‘Unball’ fundraiserBy Dana Cole
Wick News Service
SIERRA VISTA — In an effort to raise money for a therapeutic play room for children with special needs, Chiricahua Community Health Centers Inc. is holding its first ever Unball.
Scheduled for Wednesday, this “unevent” does not require participants to attend. There is no need to purchase a new dress, wear a tuxedo or hire a baby-sitter. There will be no fancy dinner, no bidding on a silent auction or dancing to live music, and no talent show.
While Unball invitations are being sent throughout Cochise County, anyone is welcome to participate. Simply send a donation and/or testimonial about a good Chiricahua Community Health Centers experience. All financial contributions will be used to purchase the play equipment, and the testimonials will be used to spread the word about CCHCI’s programs and services.
“The play area will be located at our Douglas clinic, 1100 F Avenue,” said Jennifer “Ginger” Ryan, CCHCI’s founder and director. “We have a panel of 170 special needs children who come from all over the county to see Dr. Jonathan Lee-Melk, a board certified pediatrician.”
The Douglas clinic also is staffed with another pediatrician, Dr. Stephen Lindstrom, but he does not see as many special-needs children as Lee-Melk does, Ryan added.
After conducting a survey among the parents of CCHCI’s special children, Ryan said it became apparent that what parents wanted most was for their children to have recreational opportunities, just like other kids.
“We’ve responded to that request and are remodeling our Douglas clinic so we can add a safe and interactive playroom for these children,” Ryan said.
Ryan believes the playroom will serve a two-fold purpose. It will give the children their own play area, designed specifically for them, while allowing parents to visit and exchange stories and ideas while their children play.
“Giving parents a chance to visit is going to be so valuable for these families,” Ryan said. “These children’s lives are really limited because of their special needs, so we’re doing everything we can to provide them with opportunities for growth and development.”
The idea behind the Unball, Ryan added, is to allow people to donate to “a very good cause” without having to spend money for a fancy event. Money that potential donors would be spending on an event will go toward CCHCI’s new play area instead.
For information, call Ryan at (520) 364-1429. Donations and testimonials should be sent to CCHCI Administration, 1205 F Ave., Douglas, AZ 85607.
CCHCI is a nonprofit, full service primary and preventive health care organization serving all of Cochise County, regardless of ability to pay. While insurance is accepted, there is a sliding fee scale based on family size and income for those who are uninsured.
The Chiricahua Community Health Centers Inc. The Unball invitation reads as follows:
• You don’t have to buy a dress or wear a costume.
• You don’t need a baby-sitter.
• You don’t have to go out when it is cold.
• There will be no talent show.
This is a nonevent designed for busy people with little time for events. All to benefit our children.
This event will not be held on April 1, 2009.
All you have to do is make a donation to Chiricahua Community Health Centers Inc.
The First Annual Unball is a fundraiser to provide equipment for a therapeutic play room for children with special health care needs.
Send your donation in the envelope provided by April 1.