This Letter to the Editor was published in the July 20, 2018 edition of The Courier-Journal. It was written by Brennen Lawrence, chair of the WHAS Crusade for Children board and CEO of Cuddle Clones.
It is an honor and privilege to be a part of the WHAS Crusade for Children for over 30 years, initially getting involved through the fire service. For the past nine years, I have served on the board of directors, acting as the chair for the last three years. My appreciation for the generosity of the people in Kentuckiana has grown tremendously during this time.
For 65 years, the annual phenomenon known as the Crusade has been an important part of this community. Once again in June, we all came together for the kids, making it possible to award 229 grants this year, totaling $5,675,000. We are proud to continue the tradition of returning 100 percent of the contributions to hospitals, schools, and agencies throughout Kentucky and Southern Indiana.
The Crusade Advisory Panel is a group of interdenominational ministers (rabbis, priests, pastors and reverends) who determine the grant allocations each year. This year was especially difficult, with $14.9 million in requests.
This year, charitable gifts from the people of Kentuckiana will be visible through many worthwhile projects and programs serving children with special needs. Your donations will be allocated to:
• 137 agencies and programs serving children with special needs
• 47 school districts throughout Kentucky and Southern Indiana
• 14 individual schools that are not part of a district
• 16 hospitals throughout the region
• 9 capital projects
• 6 universities for scholarships designated for special education teachers
This would not be possible without the dedication and commitment of firefighters, who remain the heart of the Crusade. This effort also includes so many children, parents, churches, synagogues, businesses and schools who have personally collected. It is humbling to see the depth and breadth of the grants that are possible this year due to such great compassion. As a result, many children who have special needs will get the help they deserve.
Board of Directors
WHAS Crusade for Children