Brad Richards recently participated in a program at Children’s Medical Center that helps kids with cancer feel a little bit better about themselves in a tough time of their lives.
Flashes of Hope is a nonprofit organization that changes the way children with cancer and other life threatening illnesses see themselves through the gift of photography and raises money for pediatric cancer research. Portraits are taken by award-winning photographers of the children, to help them feel better about their changing appearance by celebrating it. For families of terminally ill children, it’s especially important to have a portrait that preserves forever the beauty, grace and dignity of their child.
Flashes of Hope works with hospitals to transform playrooms, waiting areas and hallways into photography studios once a month. This way, the children can have their portrait taken at the hospital while they are receiving treatment. Each child is photographed individually and then with their family members. Even local celebs (such as Brad Richards) will make a surprise appearance, which is very special for the child.
Each family is presented with framed enlargements, proofs and a CD of all the images. Thanks to the efforts of volunteers, all services are provided free of charge.
Flashes of Hope and the Dallas Stars The Dallas Stars Foundation awarded Flashes of Hope a $7,500 grant in 2010 to begin the Dallas chapter at Children’s Medical Center and Cook Children’s Hospital. Since the chapter’s inception in June 2010, close to 150 kids have been photographed.
Richards visited patients at Children’s Medical Center last month and took part in this very rewarding program. The patients were very excited to have a professional hockey player to chat with and put them at ease about the photo shoot. The photos with Brad are a very special, lasting memory for the child and their family.
Other NHL teams involved with Flashes of Hope include the Phoenix Coyotes, Atlanta Thrashers, Columbus Blue Jackets, Colorado Avalanche, Minnesota Wild, Nashville Predators, Washington Capitals and St. Louis Blues.