Giving back to Children’s

> Ah, the hustle and bustle of the winter holidays: the happy (or maybe harried) crowds, the present buying, the decorations, the parties. It gives me a chill just thinking about it.

You may think it seems a little early to be thinking about the holidays, but Diana Garcia is already fully involved in planning for them. Diana, a former cancer patient at Children’s, is now an intern in the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, giving back to the organization that helped her through her illness.

When Diana was 11, she was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia and underwent almost three years of treatment at Children’s. She is now cancer free, a patient in the After the Cancer Experience Program at Children’s and a senior at Southern Methodist University.

One of the things that helped Diana and her family get through her long period of treatment was the annual holiday party for childhood cancer patients at Children’s, so this year, as her main internship project, she’s organizing the party — no small task. The party normally attracts upwards of 600 people. Still, Diana and her family went to the party for several years, so she’s got a very good feeling for what an event like this entails.

When I talked to Diana, she told me there’s a reason she’s back at Children’s. She said as bad as her treatment was, the people here made it easier. She wants to do the same for other people, and planning the holiday party is one way she can give back.

The party, to be held Monday, Dec. 14, at Brookhaven Country Club, is one of those big happy affairs because it is one of the few places where children with compromised immune systems from their cancer treatments can get together in a crowd and celebrate the joys of the season. This year Diana will make sure it’s a whiz-bang, with costumed characters, presents, food and activities such as cookie decorating and face painting. It’s exactly what a children’s party should be.

If you’d like to volunteer to donate a toy or two, you can contact Diana at 214-456-8060.

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3 Responses to Giving back to Children’s

  1. Amie Raney October 21, 2009 at 8:39 am #

    >Diana, it has been a joy to meet you. I am very inspired by all that you went through and now you are here giving back. You are an amazing person. My oldest son is a cancer survivor as well and even though he is only nine, he is alot like you. He is always wanting to give to others and wants to make sure they are happy. I believe he feels as if he has been giving the gift of life and he wants to make sure everyone else gets the same gift. We love this holiday party. It was so special to my kids when we were going through treatment and we feel very blessed to be able to give back and help any way that we can. Diana, you are doing a great job and you should be very proud of yourself.

  2. Rosalba Garcia October 2, 2009 at 8:37 pm #

    >Diana, I'm so proud of you and if you need some help, let me know. Your Mom. Rosalba

  3. Diana Garcia October 2, 2009 at 12:44 pm #

    >Thanks so much for posting this! I am very much looking forward to this amazing party and am so glad I was given the opportunity to help out! :)

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