Recently we launched an annual campaign ensure children and their families receive Sala Institute’s vitally important supportive services and resilience programs at Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at NYU Langone. We met up with Nell Shanahan, Sala Campaign Cabinet chair and the parent of a former patient at Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital to learn more about the campaign.
What is the Sala Campaign and why is it launching now?
The Sala Campaign – what I have described as a kind of “shared commitment,” if you will—is really an effort to both sustain and bolster Sala Institute’s important work—work that exists across four primary domains: safety & quality initiatives, partnerships with families, resiliency programs, and support services. So many of these services are not wholly covered by insurance, and they are the services on which patients and families rely for their healing and wellbeing. This is why we are aiming to raise $1.5 million this year. Hopefully more, actually.
As for why we need this campaign right now, I think there are three primary reasons, though I could certainly list a dozen, at least! First, there are greater numbers of patients and families coming to Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital than we have seen previously. Second, our patients and families’ needs are far more complex today and the procedures far more involved. And third, given the increasing rates of anxiety and depression in children and families, Sala’s services are more vital now than ever.
How did you first become acquainted with Sala Institute?
Well, it all started when I first met Trudy and Bob Gottesman over 20 years ago, before Sala was even created, but when they were both already very much involved in supporting NYU Langone and the children and families served both in and outside of the hospital. It was a time in my life where I was not as focused on philanthropy as, perhaps, I should have been. My early twenties! My profession and my personal relationships were at the forefront. But that wouldn’t remain the case for long. Trudy was an incredibly role model for me, and her work at the hospital had a profound effect on helping me recognize the importance of looking beyond your profession and your family and taking part in giving back and, in a way, seeking to heal the world. So that’s the background.