Upcoming Pine fundraiser offers 'Flashes of Hope' to children
A Pine woman plans to spread some holiday cheer and raise money for a program that captures special moments in the lives of sick children with a Little Cup of Hope.
Carla Mooney, founder of the Pittsburgh chapter of Flashes of Hope, is hosting a Little Cup of Hope event from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 15, at the Pine Community Center.
Children of all ages can enjoy story time, face painting, holiday craft stations and a visit from Santa Claus.
Proceeds from the event will benefit Flashes of Hope, a nonprofit that organizes professional photographers to take portraits of children who are fighting cancer or other life-threatening illnesses or conditions, Mooney said.
Local photographers volunteer their time and services for the monthly photo shoots at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.
The portrait sessions are free and catered to the patient's wants and needs. Some children dress up in costume, while others bring in toys or props for their shoots, said Michael Shulock, child life specialist at the hospital.
“Families truly appreciate it because of what it captures,” he said. “The pictures are undeniably heart-touching. It's one of my favorite things that we can do and can offer.”
For children who are stuck in their hospital rooms, the opportunity to ham it up for the camera breaks up the monotony of hospital life.
“A lot of kids get excited about doing this,” Mooney said. “We bring in makeup artists for each shoot. And some of the girls and their moms like sitting down and feeling a little bit pampered for a bit, so it's fun for them to do.”
For parents who have missed out on childhood family portraits because of time and costs related to lengthy hospitalizations, Flashes of Hope provides a way to capture an important part of their child's life.
“It's a nice record of your child's journey through this. Every kid that has cancer — it's a journey,” Mooney said. “It shows the strength that they had while going through this.”
Mooney founded the Pittsburgh chapter of Flashes of Hope after her 19-month-old son, Daniel, was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in 2006. Her family was living in Philadelphia at the time he began treatment, and Mooney saw children getting their photos taken with Flashes of Hope at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.
After moving back home to Pittsburgh, Daniel began receiving treatment at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. Mooney noticed there wasn't a Flashes chapter in Pittsburgh, so she contacted the national headquarters in Cleveland and started one. The first local photo shoot was in April 2008.
Each patient who participates in Flashes of Hope gets a photo package that includes a leather portfolio with prints from the session, a CD with digital photo copies and a photographer's release to reproduce more, which is why fundraising events such as Little Cup of Hope are important.
Daniel, now a third-grader at Richland Elementary, had his last chemotherapy treatment in 2010 and will be considered cured in 2015.
Although Daniel no longer is in treatment, Mooney hopes to continue her work with Flashes of Hope and make Little Cup of Hope an annual event.
Rachel Farkas is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-779-6902 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- North Hills-area family continues helping out-of-town patients
- North Hills board approves bid for new track surface
- Cracked sidewalks pose danger for West View wheelchair users
- Next session in North Hills history series ready to hit the road
- North Hills Interfaith Gathering scheduled
- Police eye speeding drivers along Route 19 corridor
- Photo Gallery: Yoga class at North Hills Middle School
- Nordstrom Rack to be anchor tenant at mall
- Faith leads Franklin Park man down path to productions
- Students adjust quickly after fire closes Shaler Area’s Rogers Primary