Pacing back and forth the CHOC hospital hallways while her nine-year-old son, Ethan, was being treated for his congenital heart disease, Dawn spots a familiar logo on a recognition plaque—Costco Wholesale Corporation.
As one of CHOC’s largest cause marketing partners, Costco raises over $800,000 annually through in-warehouse register fundraising. Costco’s contributions have and continue to support the full breadth of services and programs at CHOC. It is through their generosity that CHOC is able to provide critical resources to meet the essential needs of our patients and their families.
This is especially meaningful to Dawn, who is a longtime Costco employee. She has worked at Costco for the last 23 years, and today, she is an inventory control specialist at the Los Angeles Regional Office.
“I really didn’t truly grasp the magnitude of Costco’s charitable giving until I was at CHOC for Ethan’s two surgeries,” Dawn reflects. “They really do so much for children like my son, and it’s something that I’ve been so thankful for, knowing that I work for a company that supports children and families going through serious life-threatening situations.”
Compassionate Care from Day One
Ethan was born with a ventricular septal defect, a condition where the walls that separate his heart’s lower chambers did not fully develop. This led to four-year-old Ethan having two heart surgeries and getting a pacemaker put in at another hospital.
When he was nine, Ethan needed additional surgeries. After moving from Washington to California and researching care options for her son, Dawn came across Dr. Arjun Batra, a pediatric cardiologist at CHOC, and decided that he would be the best fit to complete Ethan’s third and fourth heart surgeries.
For three months, Dawn and Ethan were at CHOC, where Dr. Batra and his care team worked tirelessly to put in two additional pacemakers for Ethan.
“The amazing care that we received at CHOC was beyond anything I could have ever imagined,” Dawn says. “I was a young, single mom, and Dr. Batra would walk me through everything. CHOC just took care of us from day one.”
Ethan remembers that these three months in the hospital were during the holiday season—over the Thanksgiving to Christmas timeframe, and that the nurses and Child Life specialists made it special with gifts and fun themed activities.
“They made me feel welcome, which is the best thing because during my surgeries, it was hard. Feeling out of your element and out of your normal structure of home life,” Ethan says. “So, them making me feel like I was home was a very big help.”
Shaped Through CHOC Experiences
Ethan continued returning to CHOC as Dr. Batra’s patient after his two surgeries and had his last surgery at the age of 20.
Today, 23-year-old Ethan is healthy and works fulltime at Costco on the cart crew. He enjoys riding motorcycles and swing dancing, and his mom describes him as “a very light person,” “humorous” and “a bit of a daredevil.”
Ethan credits CHOC for shaping him into the person that he is today.
He recently graduated from Mt. San Antonio College with a degree in behavioral science, and plans to pursue a career in healthcare, a field that he was inspired to be a part of after his multiple visits to CHOC throughout his childhood.
A Heart to Give Back
“Spending so much time in a hospital or a doctor’s office and having that as a positive experience, we’ve just wanted to give back,” says Dawn.
Dawn and Ethan frequently volunteers at CHOC. One of their favorite memories is helping over the holidays and decorating a Christmas tree together for the hospital. Also, as Costco employees, they can further prioritize giving back by participating in their warehouses’ fundraising campaigns.
During the month of May, Costco employees like Dawn and Ethan are geared up for a successful 2022 campaign to support kids treated at a Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, including CHOC. From May 1-31, you can make a difference at Costco and donate at any register check-out—all funds raised locally will stay local. A total of 14 Costco locations in Orange County will raise funds in support of CHOC.
Your company and CHOC’s trusted pediatric care can create a lasting impact on the kids and community we serve.