Halloween Helpers: The Associate Board Brings Good Cheer to NorthShore’s Youngest Patients

This year’s Halloween was a ghoulishly good time for NorthShore Evanston Hospital’s Henrietta Johnson Louis Infant Special Care Unit (ISCU) and Department of Pediatrics.

After a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19 restrictions, The Associate Board of NorthShore—a group of young professionals who donate their time to help our fundraising efforts—was finally able to collect donations and deliver tons of fun stuff to some of NorthShore’s youngest and most vulnerable patients. In honor of Halloween, the members collected everything from costumes and games to more than 40 pounds of candy! All was delivered to the units in time for their Halloween celebrations.

“We had trick-or-treating, pumpkin carving, a pumpkin-painting contest, and Halloween crafts and games,” said Katelyn Beyer, NorthShore’s Coordinator of Child Life Services. “We were also jamming to a Halloween playlist all day. These are the little moments that make such a huge impact on these children’s lives. We are so appreciative of our unique partnership with The Associate Board in helping us further our child life mission of letting kids be kids in the hospital.”

“Halloween has been the first time since COVID that we’ve been able to donate physical items to the unit,” added Associate Board President Matt Sesterhenn. “It’s been so refreshing and exciting to be able to get back to volunteering. We hope the gifts brought smiles to patients who spent Halloween in the unit.”

Supporting NorthShore in Unique Ways

The Halloween drive added another dimension of good cheer to The Associate Board: finally meeting face-to-face, since many members met at a Chicago-area restaurant to collect the items.

“It felt especially meaningful to come together in person after not being able to meet for two full years,” said Monica Neururer, Associate Board & Events Manager at NorthShore. “It was also nice for our newer members. Because we’ve had our meetings only virtually, so many people have never actually met each other in real life.”

The Associate Board has supported everything from clinical research to leading-edge programs. Since 2003, members of The Associate Board have raised more than $1 million to benefit neonatal projects at Evanston Hospital. These funds helped establish a Breastfeeding Peer Counselor in the ISCU, fund important research studies, expand the Child Life Services team, and create The Associate Board Emergency Family Fund, which provides direct support to underserved families through NorthShore’s Perinatal Family Support Center. Recently, The Associate Board donated NICVIEW cameras to Evanston Hospital’s ISCU, giving parents and extended families 24/7 access to view their baby over the internet.

The Associate Board members are making a huge difference in the lives of patients at NorthShore. “Thank you so much for your support in helping us continue making a positive impact in the lives of our patients,” said Beyer. “We cannot say thank you enough!”