Tag Archives: childrens hospital

Nick Cannon visits Bayside children’s hospital for fundraiser


| ejankiewicz@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Eric Jankiewicz

Nick Cannon is giving St. Mary’s Hospital a dose of talent.

The comedian and host of “America’s Got Talent” recently became a board member of the children’s hospital and on Thursday he stopped by the Bayside facility to kick off a fundraiser.

“I visited a few years ago and hanging out with the kids really touched me,” he said, speaking at St. Mary’s. “Now I’m officially Dr. Cannon on the board.”

After that visit, he decided to join the board to help raise money for the thousands of severely disabled children that the hospital serves. The event,  A Tribute to Nick Cannon. started in the hospital on Thursday morning with guest musical performances by finalists from “America’s Got Talent” — Quintavious Johnson and Sons of Seredip. Miss. USA 2014 Nia Sanchez also visited during the event. The event will continue into the evening when Cannon and the other performers will be in Times Square with the children for a performance.

“I’m taking over Times Square,” he said, harkening back to “The Nick Cannon Show” where Cannon “takes over” various things like family or the military to make things better or set them right. In one episode, Cannon even takes over a hospital.

The hospital’s children sat in the lobby as various performers sang to the children about being comfortable with yourself even if you’re not perfect and other themes that resonated with the children.

The acoustic guitar-wielding duo Alternate Routes also performed for the children. Cannon introduced all of the groups and singers.

“The obstacles [the kids] had to overcome makes me feel like my problems are so small,” Cannon said. “The history of this place really drew me in.”

The hospital, which opened in 1870, relies on fundraisers for a large part of their funds, according to the hospital’s spokeswoman Maxine Mitchell. The staff are constantly treating the patients with various forms of physical therapy and musical therapy. But since Medicaid, the insurance most of the kids have, doesn’t cover such treatment, they depend on philanthropists and fundraisers to keep these programs running.

“A lot of our programs are strictly funded through event’s like today’s,” Mitchell said. “We’re very lucky to have someone like Nick Cannon join our board.”

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Court rules in favor of St. Mary’s construction


| RubenMuniz@queenscourier.com

The chronicle of controversial construction at St. Mary’s added an additional chapter to its touchy tale.

On May 31, the New York State First Division Appellate Court voted three to two in opposition of the Weeks Woodlands Association’s appeal to block expansion at St. Mary’s Hospital for Children.

The heated litigation has been ongoing for several years between the Weeks Woodlands Association, a community group in Bayside, and St. Mary’s. The community group has argued that St. Mary’s violated zoning laws with its current construction project.

St. Mary’s treats children with serious illnesses or injuries, providing rehabilitation and specialized medical care to over 4,000 children every day. The original building, constructed in the late 1950s, caters to children suffering from diseases prevalent during that time period.

According to St. Mary’s spokesperson Leslie Johnson, the space is in dire need of an update, coinciding with technological advances. While the new pavilion will not add patient rooms to the facility, Johnson feels the expansion will “right size” the space. Because patients’ stays average between three to five months, Johnson believes the upgraded 90,000-square-foot center will allow parents to rest by their children’s bedside and give patients a suitable amount of space to heal.

“We are pleased with the court’s decision to dismiss the case,” Johnson said. “This favorable decision brings us one step closer to the realization of a total-healing environment for children with complex medical needs.”

The court’s ruling rendered the case as moot, citing that “petitioners sought no injunctive relief from this Court upon the instant appeal.” The court also said the project is well on its way to completion, with “the excavation, foundation walls, steel superstructure, concrete slabs, metal stud frames and duct work” already finished.