Making Dreams Come True
for children with life-threatening illnesses
Over The Moon Recipient
The Dreams Come True “Over The Moon” Award was developed to recognize the men and women in our local hospitals and clinics who are on the front lines of treating and assisting our children, and who go above and “Over the Moon” for our dreamers.
We are proud to announce Christine Liscko, Child Life Specialist at Wolfson Children’s Hospital on the hematology/oncology floor, as our recent recipient of the “Over The Moon” Award.
Christine helps in ensuring that new patients are referred to Dreams Come True and partners with us in creating “New Birthday” parties for all children receiving bone marrow transplants.
While working alongside the nurses, doctors and medical staff, Christine helps a child understand their diagnosis and prepares them for impending procedures or treatments. She gets to know each and every patient and helps create special moments for each child during their stay. She can very quickly turn a child’s hospital room in to a ballet studio, a nail spa or a dinosaur cave. She works tirelessly to bring a sense of normalcy to the often long hospital stays.
Here are some questions we asked Christine:
What is your role at Wolfson Children’s Hospital?
I am a Certified Child Life Specialist on the inpatient Hematology/Oncology unit. It is my job to help patients understand the hospital on their developmental level. This includes explaining their new diagnosis or upcoming procedure. In addition to educating kids about the hospital, I teach them about coping mechanisms they can use. Many of my patients struggle with painful procedures and fear of the unknown. As a child life specialist, I can provide my patients with the tools to cope with this pain and fear. One of my favorite things to do with my kiddos is “medical play.” I can introduce medical supplies to my patients in a non-threatening and playful setting to promote control and coping of the hospital environment. In addition to helping kiddos with the tough times, I get to help my patients celebrate milestones like last chemo’s, discharge parades, and “New Birthday’s” for my transplant patients. While my focus is my patients, part of their healing comes from their family. That’s why it is important for a child life specialist to include caregiver and sibling support throughout their patients’ hospitalization. I wear many hats in this role, but I would not change anything because of the indescribable interactions that I have on a daily basis.
What do you love about your job?
I absolutely love my kids! They keep me going every day. Kids are incredibly resilient and I consider it an honor to walk alongside them on their journey. Many journeys begin with the “light bulb moment” when a kid understands their diagnosis and the strength that they have within them. My role in the journey includes helping them cope with the tough times and celebrate the achievements. I am so proud of my kiddos when they overcome a difficult procedure that they didn’t think they would be able to conquer. I am always amazed to see what child life can do and how big of an impact it can make.
What do you enjoy about working with Dreams Come True?
I enjoy collaborating with Dreams Come True. Together we can provide “New Birthday” parties for transplant patients and last chemo celebrations at the end of treatment. I can rely on Dreams Come True to be there for patients for whatever and whenever they need. I have been able to lift up a patient in the last minute because of Dreams Come True and their willingness to go above and beyond.
How would you describe the impact of a dream on a child and their family?
The impact of a dream on a child and their family is indescribable. Dreams Come True is so passionate about their dreamers. Each dream is individualized, unique and tailored to the specific hopes and dreams of each kid. They go above and beyond, down to the little details, to ensure that these kids get to experience complete and total MAGIC. I cannot count the amount of times I have heard families say, “I don’t know what we would do without Dreams Come True,” or “Dreams Come True has changed our lives.” Patients and families truly appreciate the dedication that Dreams Come True has to making dreams come to life.
One of your fondest memories associated with a dreamer and their dream trip
Dreams Come True provided a Quinceanera for one of my patients who spent over 200 days in the hospital and was unable to leave for her special birthday. They went above and beyond to ensure this monumental day in her life was special. This is a memory I will never forget because of how impactful it was for the patient and her family. They were so excited that they couldn’t stop talking about how much it meant to them. The amount of joy that came from this special event was absolutely unforgettable.
What does Dreams Come True mean to you?
Dreams Come True, to me, is an organization that feels like family. They are always there when patients and families need them. Whether it be making a tough treatment a little bit easier or making a long hospital stay more comfortable, Dreams Come True always provides and goes above and beyond my expectations. I am constantly inspired by the passion, dedication, and creativity that Dreams Come True brings into the hospital. I am so lucky to get to work with them!
At Dreams Come True, our mission is brought to life through the dedication and passion of our staff, volunteers and the partnerships on the First Coast that we cherish. It is together that we are able to ensure that no child is denied a dream or placed on a waiting list. Thank you to all our donors for their assistance in bringing hope and joy into the lives of local children battling life-threatening illnesses. A special thank you to the following community partners who have gone above and beyond to help us fulfill our mission.
Our Community. Our Children. Our Commitment.
The following individuals and companies are recognized for support provided January 2019 – December 2020.
Gifts of $30,000 and above
The John H. Moore II and Joan Kraft Moore Trust
The Estate of Grace Aldrich Andersen
Donald C. McGraw Foundation, Inc.
Gifts of $10,000 and above
- Alfred I. duPont Foundation, Inc.
- Bennett’s Feed and Farms
- Borland-Groover Clinic
- Brooks Rehabilitation
- Coker Law
- Commercial Metals Company
- Cruises & Tours Unlimited
- David A. Stein Family Foundation, Inc
- Deerwood Rotary Charities, Inc.
- Mr. Tom Dodson
- Gibraltar Title Services, LLC
- Mr. and Mrs. Joe Grantham
- Ho Ho Hold ‘Em Poker Tournament
- Jaffi’s and Kyds Fashion Show
- JAX Refrigeration, Inc.
- Miller Electric Company
- Momentum Transportation USA Inc.
- Money Pages of Florida, Inc.
- Mr. Michael C. Morales
- Mr. and Mrs. Wallace L. Nutter
- Publix Super Markets Charities, Inc.
- Renaissance Charitable Foundation
- Riverwood Men’s Club
- Ms. Linda H. Sherrer
- St. Johns Investment Management Company, LLC
- Mrs. C. Herman Terry
- The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida
- The CSI Companies, Inc.
- The Thomas M. Kirbo and Irene B. Kirbo Charitable Foundation
- Trailer Bridge, Inc.
- TSG Realty
- W. W. Gay Mechanical Contractor, Inc.
Gifts of $5,000 and above
- VOYA Foundation
- Adecco Group
- Anne Elizabeth Suratt Advised Fund
- Arlington Lions Club
- ASAP Dental Care, LLC
- BDO USA, LLC
- Beaver Toyota
- Believe Foundation, Inc.
- Berman Family Foundation, Inc.
- BGC Holdings
- Black Knight Financial Services
- Bradford Middle School
- Brightstar Financial Group
- Mrs. Christy Budnick
- C2C Innovative Solutions
- Capital Analysts of Jacksonville
- Christ Episcopal Church Dancers
- CSX Technology
- Doubles for Dreams
- DuBow Family Foundation, Inc.
- Enterprise Holdings Foundation
- Graybar Electric Company
- Mr. and Mrs. Howard Gunton
- Mr. and Mrs. Todd Holder
- Huber Engineered Woods
- Jack and Betty Demetree Family Foundation
- Jacksonville International Airport Management Council
- JA-RU, Inc.
- Jax Arcade Expo
- Lewis & Raulerson, Inc.
- Mr. and Mrs. Thomas R. McGehee, Jr.
- Mr. and Mrs. Wade S. McGowan
- Miller Electric
- Miller’s Ale House
- NAI Hallmark Partners
- Northeast Florida Square and Round Dance Association
- PNC Financial Services
- PPR Talent Management
- Price Family Charitable Fund
- Railing Chiropractic and Acupuncture
- Selevan Family Foundation
- Shore Excursions Group
- Mr. and Mrs. Leed Silverfield
- Stein Mart
- TD Bank
- The Bolles School 5th Grade Class
- The Main Street America Group
- The Suddath Companies
- Mr. Stephen J. Tremel, Jr.
- Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.
- Mr. and Mrs. John H. Williams, Jr.
- Dr. and Mrs. Bruce R. Witten
- Ms. Celeste Beale
Dream Society of Giving
In 1984, the Northeast Florida community laid the foundation that has led to the fulfillment of more than 3,700 dreams. Today, annual corporate and individual gifts sustain the ever growing work of Dreams Come True as we strive to maintain our commitment to never have a waiting list and never turn down an eligible child. Gifts to Dreams Come True are tailored to meet the goals of each company or individual donor. Regardless of whether your support is through a general donation or for a specific program or event, your gift will be recognized.
Approximately 98% of all dreams granted by Dreams Come True last year fell into this range. Therefore, by becoming a Dream Maker, you can underwrite the cost of an entire dream.
To learn more about our levels of giving, download our Dream Society of Giving packet. For additional information, or questions about getting your company involved, please reach out to Sheri Criswell, Executive Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 904-296-3030.