Spirit Halloween’s five Valley locations raised $63K for STHS Children’s

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Conjuring up a scary amount of help, Spirit Halloween raised over $63,000 at its five locations in the Rio Grande Valley last fall to donate to the Child Life Department at South Texas Health System Children’s.

Spirit of Children, the nonprofit arm of Spirit Halloween more recently known for helping STHS organize its first in-person Halloween party for patients at STHS Children’s in October, is now donating $63,187 to the hospital system to support its patient care and services for kids.

This was a 10% increase in donations compared to 2022’s contributions. The money is raised from costume and decoration sales at the Spirit Halloween stores in the Valley during the spooky season.

“The impact is immeasurable. Their donations provide all the things that we need to host activities for our kids that are fun for them,” STHS Children’s Pediatric Administrator Kimberly Davis said in a news release Thursday. “For patients, healthcare isn’t fun at all, especially for kids. It’s very scary, to them. But these activities help calm our patients and give them a great distraction so that they can get better.”

A staff member of Spirit Halloween pets a dog at South Texas Health System Children’s in Edinburg on Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2023. (South Texas Health System Photo)

Spirit of Children has been “a major supporter” of STHS Children’s Child Life program through a partnership with the auxiliary, according to the release.

The goal of the program is to help make a hospital stay easier for pediatric patients through non-medical treatments and healing play that focuses on reducing stress for both the patients and their families.

With the help of the funds raised by Spirit Halloween, the hospital has been able to purchase a sensory rover that provides multiple sensory options to help soothe children at the hospital. The funds have also allowed the hospital to create the Children’s Healing Garden, an outdoor space that allows patients to enjoy sunshine and distract themselves from hospital life.

For Lance Ames, chief executive officer for STHS Edinburg and STHS Children’s, the hospital is able to find new ways to treat pediatric patients through support from businesses like Spirit Halloween.

“To have Spirit of Children come back year after year to help support this children’s hospital and what we’re doing means the world to us,” Ames said in the release. “We know that the future is very bright for STHS Children’s and for the awesome kiddos and their parents in this community because of their generous hearts.”