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The Message of Hope Foundation is a non-profit dedicated to enhancing the quality of life of hospitalized children through the creation and distribution of engaging care packages that encourage play and provide a creative outlet for children battling chronic or life-threatening diseases, and those with disabilities.
The Foundation was founded in 2011 by Emi Burke, born out of a desire to bring hope and happiness to hospitalized children with chronic and life-threatening illnesses, and special needs. A parent of a profoundly disabled young son often requiring intensive services, Mrs. Burke was moved to action after witnessing other young hospitalized children undergoing treatment with little to engage them or distract from long hospital stays. Many families invest significant resources in expensive treatments as they strive to provide the best care for their children, leaving not much left for small luxuries such as coloring books and crayons or other staples of childhood.
Six years later, the Foundation has inspired hope and resiliency in thousands of children, achieved through the generous support of numerous national corporate partners and dedicated volunteers. The Foundation’s signature Happy Hope Bags are a boost of hope for children who are hospitalized, regardless of their illness or disability, providing engaging activities that help to take a child's mind off their treatment or illness. In 2017, the Foundation provided over 50,000 Happy Hope Bags to hospitalized children. The Foundation’s goal is to reach over 1 million hospitalized children by 2021.