Meet the Donahue/Parker kids, Hunter, Ethan, Andrew, Emma and George!
Meet the Donahue/Parker kids, Hunter, Ethan, Andrew, Emma and George
Alex’s grandparents met parents Jennifer and Dr. Aaron Parker this past year and found out how amazing one family can be! Dr. Roy Aaron Parker arranged to have Be the Match swab kits available at his Bradenton dental office to swab eligible persons to register with Be the Match, hoping to help 10 year old Alex Sims’ family find a bone marrow donor for Alex. When the Parkers told their children about Alex and his need for a bone marrow transplant they had many questions. After gaining somewhat of an understanding of Alex’s auto-immune disease and his need for a bone marrow transplant to survive a very rare and often fatal disease called IPEX, they wanted to know what they could do to help. When their parents told them Alex’s family was trying to help find Alex a bone marrow donor and working with an organization called Children’s Organ Transplant Association (COTA) to raise money for COTA to help families with children pay the expenses of their child’s transplant, they asked if they could help. With their parent’s blessing, they immediately began to brainstorm about fundraising ideas.
First they planned a “Painting With A Twist” party along with their friend Gabrielle Gilbert and with help from all their parents, they and invited everyone they knew to a “Painting With a Purpose” party, hosted by “Painting With a Twist” Studio 137 in Bradenton. The event sold out with both adults and children attending to help the kids raise money for COTA in honor of Team Alex. Local businesses donated items for refreshments and prizes for a raffle and at day’s end, they had raised $910.00, which they promptly donated to www.COTAforTeamAlexS.com.
Next, the children began to sell “A Cure for Alex” wristbands to friends and family, raising $455.22 in just a few weeks. That wasn’t enough for Andrew and his siblings though, they wanted to do more. Andrew approached his school’s principal, asking if he could sell “A Cure for Alex” wristbands to other students at school. With permission to do so, Andrew went on the School’s TV News program, to tell other students about Alex and his need for a transplant, asking for their help. Emma also shared Alex’s story with her classmates, who wrote letters of support and encouragement to Alex. George, Emma and Ethan also arranged to sell “A Cure for Alex” wristbands at their respective schools and their joint-fundraiser to support COTA in honor of Team Alex was off and running! During the month of May, Ethan, Andrew, Emma and George sold wristbands at their respective schools and their multi schools joint-fundraiser netted $1660.00. When all the dust settled, the Donahue/Parker and Gilbert children (with help from their respective parents), tallied their cumulative fundraising totals and had raised a total of $3025.22 for COTA for Team Alex! The money the children raised will be donated to COTA in honor of Team Alex and will be available for a lifetime of transplanted related expenses. Children’s Organ Transplant Association (COTA) is a 501c3 charity that helps families of transplant children raise money to help with transplant expenses. Every cent raised for a COTA child is available for the child’s lifetime. Thank you to this wonderful family as well as Ida M. Stewart Elementary, Jessie P Miller Elementary and Martha B. King Middle students and staff for your support.
Love, Alex Sims & Family