Block By Block

Posted on April 15, 2011 in Events


Dr. Matt Hirschfeld

In its fourth year, the Healthy Alaska Natives Foundation (HANF) is taking baby steps in fundraising while helping ANMC make big leaps in baby care.

Carrie Brown, HANF Director, and Dr. Matthew Hirschfeld, ANMC’s Director of Maternal Child Health, are collaborating on the first phase of their shared vision for the ANMC’s Inpatient Pediatrics department, affectionately known as “Kids Wing.”

“Our health care is unsurpassed, but the facilities for the families staying here while their children are sick are not particularly comfortable,” Dr. Hirschfeld explained during a tour of the Pediatrics department. “Parents have asked for it – they’ve received great care here, but they would like to have a more family friendly environment since many stay at ANMC for weeks while their child recovers from illness.”

That’s where HANF, ANTHC’s charitable arm, comes in. Brown dedicated $38,000 from the popular Paddle Raise at March’s Raven’s Ball to make the Kids Wing more welcoming for children and families.

Dr. Hirschfeld has a long-term vision of a Kids Wing that balances the best care with the best comfort. Brown’s vision is a HANF that “moves the dial” for medical care improvements, wellness and prevention programs, and healthy village environments that advance health for all Alaska Natives.

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HANF is most visible at Raven’s Ball. March’s event raised $325,000 for HANF, up from $222,000 in 2010. Brown wants to make equal gains in philanthropy by growing the ANTHC employee and Board of Directors campaigns, as well as developing a statewide campaign for individuals and corporations.

In 2010, HANF distributed $160,000, the first time it awarded money in its three years. In April, HANF will distribute another $100,000, as guided by its oversight committee.

“These are great first steps,” said Brown, who is beginning her second year as HANF Director. “But my big goal is sustainable, ongoing fundraising that makes a real difference.”

View the Kid's Wing Video