|Volunteers from SAIC spent Nov. 5 helping create the inn’s new play area.
About 35 volunteers from Science Applications International Corp. volunteered Nov. 5 at the Children’s Inn at NIH, painting, planting and sprucing up the inn’s new playground and park. In addition to the service day, SAIC donated $200,000 to the inn’s playground campaign.
NIH researcher Dr. Lori Wiener, longtime inn board member and chair of the playground fundraising committee, thanked the volunteers, who included SAIC executive leaders Steve Comber and Mike Eddings, for their support.
“We are so grateful to SAIC for all you have done to make the new playground and park possible for our kids and their families,” said Wiener. “I can’t tell you how much it’s going to mean to these children, who have been hooked up to IVs all day in the Clinical Center, to be able to come back to the inn and simply play outside, breathe some fresh air, have a little fun and forget about being sick for awhile.”
“The inn is extremely grateful for SAIC’s very generous donation to our playground and outdoor play area,” said Kathy Russell, chief executive officer at the inn. “We are not only honored by their financial support, but also by the generosity of SAIC employees who donate their time to help make the inn a better place. The inn’s mission is to provide a safe, comforting environment for children and their families. The support of SAIC helps us fulfill that mission.”
The inn’s relationship with SAIC is a natural and successful fit, said SAIC’s Comber. “SAIC scientists and technical personnel work side-by-side with NIH researchers and program staff every day to help discover the causes of and treatments for diseases such as cancer and AIDS,” he said. “We wanted to do something to show our appreciation for the amazing work that the NIH does every single day.”
More than 1,700 children stay at the inn each year while participating in medical research at NIH.