Friends of Jack Foundation

Over the past five years, the Friends of Jack Foundation has made significant donations to help Southcoast Health’s littlest patients.

In the past few months specifically, these donations have included items from a drivable toy car to children’s books supporting Southcoast’s pediatric patients and their families.

To help calm nerves and reduce fears related to surgery, pediatric patients at St. Luke’s Hospital can now drive themselves into the operating room. The drivable, toy car is decorated with child-favorite superheroes, has functioning headlights and can be driven either by children themselves, or by remote control. “Surgery can be scary at any age, but especially so for our youngest, most vulnerable patients,” said Dr. Feinerman, Southcoast Health’s Chief of Otolaryngology. “This truly helps everyone involved. When parents see their children put at ease, it puts them at ease as well.”

Dr. Ray Kruger, President & CEO of Southcoast Health agreed.  “We are grateful for the continuous support of the Friends of Jack Foundation, who make it possible to provide an even more personalized experience for our littlest patients,” he said. “These donations remind us how important and influential it is to meet our patients with clinical excellence and compassionate care. They help us foster a welcoming and friendly environment, and thereby help children build a positive relationship with their health care.”

Additionally, newborns discharged from the hospital’s Special Care Nursery will be gifted a children’s book donated by the Friends of Jack Foundation. The Special Care Nursery provides acute care to newborns who need additional medical care after delivery, while providing an intimate space for mother and baby to stay and be cared for together.

The Special Care Nursery, which the Friends of Jack Foundation helped fund, includes a program called ‘Sharon’s Library,’ named after a longtime volunteer and retired nurse, which ensures each family will be gifted a book upon their departure, to promote reading at home and its long-term benefits.

”We are grateful to partner with Southcoast Health, which has the honorable task of serving our communities’ most vulnerable populations,” said Jill Fearons, Founder/President of the Friends of Jack Foundation. “The reality of healthcare today is that there are a number of important programs that require charitable giving in order to exist. Many of these programs directly impact children and their families. We feel it is our responsibility, with the help of our many amazing supporters, to ensure that these programs thrive right here in our neighborhood hospitals.”

The Friends of Jack Foundation is perhaps best known for the thousands of teddy bears that are distributed each year to children who are sick or injured in the St. Luke’s Emergency Department. The Friends of Jack Foundation also provides funding to cover the total cost of two part-time Child Life Specialists in the Emergency Department. It supplies the majority of toys and supplies for the Child Life Department, as well.

Thank you, Friends of Jack Foundation, for the year-round support you provide to Southcoast Health and for your dedication to enhancing the physical, mental and emotional health and well-being of all children.