100+ Heartbeats for PATCHES, a non-profit foundation, was created in 2018 by founder and president Jennifer Resnick, to serve a dire need in the local community.
“I was introduced to PATCHES PPEC, a medical daycare nursing center eight years ago, and immediately felt that I needed to start a foundation in order to help this special organization with fundraising efforts,” said Jennifer. “Because the center cares for some of the most vulnerable children in our Miami community.”
PATCHES PPEC is more than a medical daycare, it is an award-winning, pediatric nursing center that serves economically vulnerable families in South Dade. Children with complex medical needs are given culturally sensitive, compassionate nursing care regardless of the ability to pay.
At the center, dedicated pediatric nurses and professional therapists tirelessly provide daily life-changing nursing care, nutrition, and socialization to children ranging in ages from birth to 21 years. These children have extraordinary ongoing medical conditions which might include: respiratory illness, seizures, genetic disorders, cerebral palsy, in addition to the care of preemies and pre and post organ transplants.
“All of the families that PATCHES provides care for have a child with an extraordinary illness and even if they weren’t economically challenged prior, it’s very likely that they would become so because the financial and emotional stress caring for their ill child 24/7 would make holding onto a job impossible,” explained Jennifer. “The parent eventually might be forced to choose between their job or their child’s healthcare, and that’s where PATCHES comes in.”
PATCHES offers parents peace of mind, knowing their child is receiving the best care possible in a safe and enriching environment, so they can return to school or work.
“It is one of the most amazing transformative places, and when you witness the level of care that is provided, it’s an unforgettable and profound experience – seeing the love, devotion, and dedication the staff has for these children,” explained Jennifer.
With the extensive services PATCHES provides to families, which includes many self-funded programs, there is little to no time for the center’s organizers to fundraise. Two years ago, Jennifer Resnick invited a small group of South Dade women to help focus on the fundraising efforts, to grow the financial support for the unfunded programs, and the extra costs that PATCHES absorbs for all children who are accepted without the ability to pay.
“100+ Heartbeats is a not for profit organization dedicated to fundraising for the growing needs of PATCHES PPEC and the population of children in poverty with medically complex illnesses who benefit from their care,” said Jennifer. “By doing our part, we help to defray the cost of keeping their programs available and allow PATCHES to focus solely on providing vital care.”
Fundraising events include the annual POWER UP FOR PATCHES Luncheon every February and the CHIP IN FOR PATCHES golf tournament to be held in the fall. Donation opportunities and information for future events can be found at PATCHESPPEC.ORG/100-plus-heartbeats.
“Our committee is a small group of powerful committed women, who passionately believe in supporting PATCHES’ mission,” said Jennifer. “We want to make a difference in the lives of the children.”
Programs and items in need of funding include medication, oxygen, respiratory therapy, school and cafeteria supplies, teacher and nurse salaries, bus transportation, wheelchairs and everyday necessities such as diapers, bibs and laundry detergent.
“In addition to fundraising for care and supplies, a larger ongoing effort is that PATCHES will eventually need a new campus that will house an expanded nursing center and other care facilities for the children,” said Jennifer.
PATCHES serves roughly 75 children each day, and while the center at times is tight for space, the directors continue to find ways to offer help to families in need of daily nursing care.
“It is our goal that the care the center provides is accessible to any family in need because every child deserves the right to live free of pain, healthy and happy,” stated Jennifer. “For many children, PATCHES is their home away from home, and their happy place where, despite their illness, they can just be children.”