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Michael Magro Foundation and JZips Team Up To Help Kids With Cancer

Two Long Island nonprofit organizations serving children battling cancer and other catastrophic illnesses spent the holiday season joining forces to help these pediatric warriors find moments of fun and help simplify the treatment process. Michael Magro Foundation and JZips partnered together to provide “Design Your Own JZips” to hundreds of children at Stony Brook Children’s, Cohen’s Children’s Hospital, Hasenfeld Children’s Hospital in New York, along with Golisano Children’s Hospital in Florida.

The Design Your Own JZips kits, which include one white, unisex JZips tee shirt, a canvas tote bag, and a ten pack of fabric markers, were sent to the children in the pediatric oncology department of the four hospitals to provide an activity, an opportunity to create a design, and to make accessing each child’s medical port more seamless for each child. JZips are functional tee-shirts to make the process of accessing the medical port easier for children undergoing chemotherapy and other treatments that require a medical port. The shirts are available in sizes as large as XXL and as small as 2T. With assistance from the Child Life Specialists at each hospital, the JZips team were able to send over enough kits for every child in their care. Funds made possible by the Michael Magro Foundation ensured sufficient resources to support every child.

“It was truly our pleasure to make sure each child could receive a Design Your Own JZips while they were hospitalized during the holiday season,” noted Terrie Magro, Vice President and Co-Founder of the Michael Magro Foundation. “Children need something to make them smile while in the hospital. An opportunity to design their own JZips and, perhaps, decorate the tote for their mom, grandmother or themselves is a special experience.” Jodi Harouche, who, together with her son, Jordan founded JZips following his personal bout with cancer, noted that the Design Your Own kits were an enormous success during the holiday season. “We are thrilled that these customizable JZips brought so much joy to children and their parents alike. It makes us all very happy to know we are impacting their experience in a positive way.” Harouche went on to talk about her experience in working with Magro and the Foundation. “I am so grateful to be working with Terrie and everyone at the Michael Magro Foundation. As a newer nonprofit, our team has learned a great deal and we are confident that we are heading down the most promising path for our future.”

Design Your Own kits were sent to an array of other hospitals in New York, Alabama, Florida, Illinois, Rhode Island, and Texas. These kits were underwritten by private donations and provided to children as a surprise treat. Individual orders for kits were also available on the JZips website. While these were a limited-time item, Harouche noted that they will be bringing them back again for the next holiday season.

Michael Magro Foundation is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization founded by Paul and Terrie Magro to honor the life of their son Michael, who passed away from leukemia at the age of 13. The Foundation works with the Cancer Center for Kids at NYU Langone Long Island Hospital, Stony Brook Children’s Cancer Division, Cohen’s Children’s Hospital, and other regional pediatric specialty offices where treatment of chronic diseases is ongoing. Core programs offered include Life Essentials [helping families struggling financially during their child’s treatment with non-medical expenses] and Project SOAR [providing support for childhood cancer patients, families, students, and teachers when the patient returns to school following long illnesses]. The organization has expanded its work to include children’s hospitals in New York City and several areas throughout Florida, as well as in California, Texas, and Oregon. For more information on the Michael Magro Foundation, visit https://michaelmagrofoundation.com or email info@magrofoundation.com.

JZips is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that aims to provide comfort and convenience to children undergoing chemotherapy or other ongoing medical treatment. JZips provides functional zipper shirts at no charge to make medical ports easily and quickly accessible, while kid-friendly designs bring a small sense of fun and normalcy to the situation. For more information on JZips, visit https://jzips.org or email j@jzips.com.