The Fresno Bee’s 32nd annual Kids Day started off early Tuesday morning, when more than 8,000 volunteers sold Kids Day special issues of Fresno Bee newspapers to fundraise for Valley Children’s Hospital.
Employees from FresYes Realty endured the rain to volunteer their time to sell newspapers.
On the corner of Palm and Herndon, volunteers raised more than $400. Today was their fifth time volunteering.
“We try to get involved in the community and when sponsorship people from Valley Children Hospital contacted us, it was a no-brainer,” said FresYes employee Luis Parrales.
Kids Day is renowned for raising millions of dollars to help fund the hospital’s commitment to offer uncompensated care for families unable to pay.
Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims was out selling papers and noted that of all the years she has been volunteering, Tuesday had by far the largest volunteer turnout. She said she felt especially uplifted that so many young people were volunteering.
“We need to make sure that we develop younger people to come in and fill the void when others are gone,” Mims said.
Since 1952, Valley Children’s Hospital has become the second largest children’s hospital in the state, according to the hospital’s website. Fresno City Councilman Steve Brandau noted that Valley Children’s Hospital draws patients not just from Fresno, but many cities around the Valley.
“I think it is a great way for the community to be aware always of the outstanding need that we have at Valley Children’s hospital,” Brandau said. “Across the community today, everybody is going to be made aware that we have this wonderful hospital and that we’re raising money for it.
The Fresno State women’s rugby team volunteered despite the rainy forecast. Fresno State student Averi Peterson said that the team has been volunteering for years as Valley Children’s Hospital continues to invite them back.
“This means a lot because of how much money they make for Valley Children’s out here,” Peterson said. “It’s really awesome that different clubs and communities are out here making money for them.”