Holiday season


December 14, 2021 – Three South Florida-based toy companies, a current and former professional athlete, and two nonprofits recently came together to make the holiday season a little brighter for sick kids at the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital.

Toy companies – Jazwares of Sunrise and Just Play and Basic Fun! of Boca Raton – donated hundreds of toys for distribution to sick children at the Children’s Hospital and throughout Memorial Health System. Former Major League Baseball Player Jeff Conine and his wife, Cindy, supporters of the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation for nearly 30 years, were on hand to accept specially selected donations for children ages 1 to 13.

“We are very grateful to Jazwares, Just Play and Basic Fun! always keep our children in mind at this time of year, ”said Kevin janser, President of the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation. “Being in the hospital is never easy, but their thoughtfulness will undoubtedly make things better for children with serious medical problems.

Florida Panthers mascot, Viktor E. Ratt, also participated in the toy drive and was present for the unveiling of the customized “cancer bears” that will be offered to pediatric cancer patients. The bears wear a Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital swimsuit with Alexander “Sacha” Barkovname and number 16 on the back.

Cancer Bears is a nonprofit organization founded by an eight year old Alivia gustman who partnered with the NHL superstar to provide the teddy bears to the patients. “I think it’s important that kids have something to cuddle when they are in treatment,” Gustman said.

Barkov, like Conine, is an ambassador for the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation who, for

the third consecutive season will contribute $ 1,600 for every goal he scores and $ 800 for everyone he helps benefit the children and families of the pediatric facility. the

The # BarkovScores4JoeD campaign has donated over $ 105,000 in its first two seasons and provided a sequel to every Panthers home game for use by those logged into the hospital.

The toy drive-through event was held at the Conine Clubhouse, a hotel-like facility that families

can stay for free while their child is cared for at ‘Joe D.’

Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital ( is one of the nation’s leading pediatric hospitals, offering a full range of health care services and programs in a caring and compassionate setting designed specifically for children. A level one trauma center, it combines cutting-edge technology, the expertise of board-certified specialists, and a patient and family-centered approach to heal the body, mind and spirit of those it touches.

The hospital’s non-profit foundation focuses on philanthropy to positively impact patients, families, and fund programs, facilities, and equipment that support the mission of the pediatric facility.

To learn more about Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital, visit and connect with @jdchospital on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram.

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