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SBA Foundation establishes COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund

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During the COVID-19 Pandemic, many individuals and businesses are finding new and creative ways to support others. The SBA Foundation Board of Directors is excited to be able to offer another option with the Susan B. Allen Memorial Hospital COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund.

This fund will support the ongoing efforts of SBAMH and its staff to provide much-needed care and treatment to the community during this time. Funds will go to help support needs related to the COVID-19 response. These could include such things as medical supplies, equipment for staff, patient needs and more.

Your donation can help make a difference in the lives of others during this trying time. If you would like to donate, please visit the giving page on our website, where you can give safely and securely. You also can send a check to the SBA Foundation, 720 W. Central Ave., El Dorado, KS 67042. Please designate it for the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund.

For more information, contact Holly Landon, Foundation Executive Director, at hlandon@sbamh.org or 913-209-2571.

Family receives exceptional care during stay in SBA

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(l-r) Karon Young, Sharon Cline, Martha Jo Johnston and Bobbye Andrews

Sisters Sharon Cline and Karon Young, who live outside of Augusta, and their aunt, Bobbye Andrews, of Midwest City, Okla., love the experience they have received at Susan B. Allen Memorial Hospital with their mother and sister, Martha Jo Johnston, who is 92.

Martha was admitted to the hospital recently and her daughters called Bobbye to tell her she should come visit her sister because she wasn’t doing well. Bobbye is Martha’s youngest sister at age 89.

During their time at SBA, they have been extremely pleased with the care and comfort they have been shown.

“Every nurse and staff member who comes in through the door is pleasant and has a smile,” Bobbye said. “They go above and beyond.”

Bobbye said she has volunteered in a lot of hospitals after she retired.

“I have never seen the staff members, no matter how tired they are, come in with a frown,” she explained. “They are always asking what they can do to help us. That includes the housekeeper, Kathy [Rose].”

Sharon said they have been to SBA a couple of times with their mother, and the certified nurse aide, Heather Sutter, knows how to care for her to best meet her needs. They also said Nurse Tech Tobi Delaney was very sweet.

“Dawn [Ebert, RN] was our nurse last night,” Bobbye added. “She sang her a song while trying to feed her.

“The care we have received in this hospital has been above and beyond.”

Karon agreed, saying, “They’re so friendly and compassionate. You ask for something and they are right here. I have been to other hospitals where you have to wait and wait.”

Martha Jo also felt the same way.

“This is always where mom wants to come back to,” Karon said. “She does love this place.”

“There are not enough thank you’s out there to thank all of the nurses and staff,” Bobbye said. “I have seen nothing but the best; it’s clean; there are all of the supplies you need. It makes me proud and happy to see how well she is treated.”

SBA announces new Foundation executive director

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Susan B. Allen Memorial Hospital is pleased to announce Holly Landon as the new executive director of the hospital’s Foundation, bringing 16 years of nonprofit management experience to the position.
Landon, of Wichita, comes to the Susan B. Allen Foundation from the Fundamental Learning Center in Wichita, where she has worked since 2016 as their senior director of operations. In this role she has had the opportunity to oversee and evaluate the daily operational activities of the center and the Darrel and Dee Rolph Literacy Academy.
“I look forward to diving in and learning all about the El Dorado community and meeting all the amazing individuals who make this community a wonderful place to live, work and play,” she said.
Prior to her time at the Fundamental Learning Center, Landon was the director of philanthropic services at Wichita Community Foundation and the director of business services at the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce.
She feels her years of experience at Wichita nonprofits, particularly the Chamber, has prepared her to cultivate donor relationships in the El Dorado community.
“I look forward to providing vision and direction to a growth-oriented organization,” she said. “I plan to combine my expertise in leadership and relationship building with the valuable individuals, resources and ideas already in place to enhance and improve the El Dorado community. I feel my friendly and open personality helps me to connect to people and bring them together to make a difference.”
In addition to her work experience, Landon also has been active volunteering in her community. She has volunteered with the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce, Junior League of Wichita, Big Brothers Big Sisters, NCAA Division I Women’s Tournament Community Steering Committee, Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland, Kansas Humane Society and more.
“Volunteering allows us to feel compassion, love, patience and many moments of understanding the true meaning of being a blessing to others,” Landon said of why she enjoys volunteering.
She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in communications, integrated marketing communication from Wichita State University. She also has completed Dale Carnegie Leadership Training and been involved with the Institute of Organizational Management, Young Professionals groups, Leadership Elite Program and Center for Management Development at WSU.
“We are excited to have Holly joining our team at SBA,” said Jim Kirkbride, SBA President and CEO. “She brings great experience to our organization and I look forward to seeing what she will accomplish with the SBA Foundation.”
She began her new role with the SBA Foundation on July 2.

Farm to Table Event

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We had such a wonderful time Thursday evening, June 13th, at the Farm to Table event! This dinner allows us to help raise awareness concerning the wellness initiatives in our community, of which, the Susan B. Allen Hospital Foundation helps support. Every ticket purchased goes back in to that initiative so, for that, we are truly grateful to those who joined us! Again, Thank You for supporting the SBA Foundation.

SBA Foundation Delivers Hit with Amy Brown

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Photo by Amy Hall, The Studio, El Dorado

By Kristin Bogner

Radio personality Amy Brown is no stranger to giving back, and she wants people to know that even one small act can make a large difference.

“That can have a domino effect, which turns into the grandiose effect you wanted in the first place,” she said.

Brown’s latest “small act,” traveling from Nashville to small-town Kansas to host “An Evening with Amy Brown” on Friday, raised funds for Susan B. Allen Memorial Hospital’s Cancer Center. Nearly 800 ticket holders listened captively as Brown conversed on stage with her friend and Susan B. Allen Hospital Foundation’s executive director, Chase Locke, in USD 490’s new Performing Arts Center.

“I want people to walk away inspired in some way,” she said before the event began. “I wouldn’t want people to walk away not feeling motivated to make a difference, even in a small way.”

Nearly 5 million listeners hear Brown — co-host of iHeartMedia’s nationally syndicated country morning show, The Bobby Bones Show — share her stories on the radio each morning alongside Bones and Lunchbox. But Friday was the first time Brown served as the solo draw for fans to listen to her speak in person, and attendees were in for a treat.

During a two-hour, undeniably candid conversation, Brown shared insider information about her life. Digging into tough topics ranging from her mother’s battle with cancer to the lengthy and often frustrating process of adopting her two children from Haiti, Brown seemed to hold nothing back.

She shared how she graduated from college five years late because of one three-hour correspondence course, the painful struggle she experienced with her parents’ divorce and her mother’s death, and even details about her journey with infertility.

Audience members shed tears as Brown related to a pair of sisters in the audience who are experiencing their own struggle with a parent’s cancer battle. Attendees laughed as she facetimed her father, who is currently fighting cancer, and teased him about his “soul patch.”

Brown said she liked Wichita as the location for her first foray into solo events because Wichita was the first market The Bobby Bones Show syndicated to out of its city of origination, Austin, Texas.

“I love Wichita, and I feel like we’re forever connected,” she said. “Y’all took a shot on us, and it worked out.”

Some of the most touching moments from the evening centered around discussion about cancer, which was fitting considering the fundraiser’s beneficiary. Brown’s mother’s battle with cancer inspired the #PimpinJoy clothing line, produced by The Shop Forward, an organization that raises charitable funds through apparel sales.

Brown shared how one evening her mother’s prayer in a hospital chapel sparked a movement that has now benefitted countless cancer patients with millons of dollars raised.

“She just said, ‘Lord, use this cancer for good,’” Brown shared with the crowd. “Her prayer was so selfless. I learned a lot from that.”

The Shop Forward pop-up shop was before and after Friday’s event, with favorite items including #PimpinJoy apparel and 4 Things Custom Tote bags through a line called Espwa, which benefits those in need in Haiti.

The 4 Things Totes are available for personalization to include a person’s four favorite things, which inspired the title for Brown’s latest venture, a podcast called “4 Things with Amy Brown” with Nashville’s Podcast Network. Each Thursday on a new episode of the podcast Brown discusses four topics.

“It ranges from interviews, health and fitness tips, fashion, beauty, mom stuff, adoption, all the things,” she said.

Brown’s openness and authenticity on her podcast and on the radio contribute to her popularity. Locke said it best at the close of the evening.

“By sharing,” he said, “you make us feel like we’re not alone.”  

Cross Fund Established

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Dealing with the loss of a loved one is a difficult and emotional time. Finding ways to remember that person now and into the future, often helps with that journey. This is true for Pam Cross, who lost her husband, Matt, to cancer earlier this year.

Pam and her family set up a memorial fund to remember Matt Cross through the Susan B. Allen Memorial Hospital Foundation, with the goal of helping others who are undergoing care or treatment.

“It is important because he truly felt blessed in his life and career,” Pam said of Matt. “He was a big community person and felt the need to give back.”

That included serving on the Hospital Board for 21 years.

“He felt so grateful to be part of that,” Pam said. “He was always so excited when something new happened or the Hospital received new equipment that would in turn, improve patient care. It was an honor for him to be a part of SBA.”

Because of that, the Hospital was the perfect fit for a memorial fund for Matt.

“Matt was always out to make lives better for other people,” she said. “Going through cancer treatment is a traumatic experience and we were all so greatly blessed by the care he received during this time.

“What excites me is knowing other people are going to receive the comfort and care they maybe otherwise wouldn’t have,” Pam explained. “And it lets his legacy live on.”

At the Foundation’s recent Gala, the Matthew J. Cross Fund for Care was announced as a new fund established at the Foundation. It was established through the generous memorial contributions of family and friends and a gift made by Pam.

The fund was influenced by a program started earlier this year to provide free meals to those undergoing cancer treatment. Matt was the first person to receive this meal.

“When trying to decide what we were going to do with the money, we talked about how we could best honor Matt,” said Chase Locke, Foundation Executive Director. “For Matt to be the first person on the receiving end of that was pretty special.”


They wanted to establish something that would continue the meal program, but also serve others.

“This fund is really going to help give people a break, anywhere from continuing the meal program to providing transportation assistance,” Locke said. “You have some folks, maybe on fixed incomes or in the rural areas who can’t even make it to their appointments because they can’t afford the gas. We’re going to help with that. All those things that you shouldn’t worry about, we’re going to look at and help fund that.”

After the fund was announced at the Foundation’s annual Gala last Friday evening, people had the opportunity to donate.

“Through the generosity of our donors, we were able to raise more than $50,000 for the fund,” Locke said. “It was exciting to see the level of generosity and compassion shown by our donors to help such a worthwhile project.”

“I was totally blown away,” Pam said of the response during the Gala. “Even since that evening, I stop and catch myself thinking about it, and I just cannot get over the love that was shared that night. There are so many truly caring people out there and it way surpassed any expectation I had. My hope is for it to continue well into the future. It’s comforting to me to know he was loved by so many people.”

This is a fund people can contribute to either on a monthly or annual basis or a one-time donation. To learn more about donating, contact Chase Locke, Executive Director of SBAMH Foundation, at 316- 321-8741.

EWOW program concludes with Kansas Kids Fitness Day

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The EWOW (El Dorado Working on Wellness) program for USD 490 third graders concluded last week with the Kansas Kids Fitness Day.

Throughout the program, students at Grandview, Skelly and Blackmore Elementary schools completed two weeks of physical activities, led by YMCA trainers; two weeks of nutrition with SBA dietitians; and one week focused on health, led by the SBA school nurse navigator. Students also received a water bottle, and pedometer as part of the program, as well as a journal to record their exercise and the foods they eat.

Third grade teachers at all of the schools noticed improvements in their students after they completed this program.

“I have noticed more students choosing salads for lunch since we first started the EWOW program,” said third grade teachers at Grandview. “Also, students continue to wear their fitness trackers months after the program concluded. Additionally, I know that the students take the initiative to keep pretty active during recess. Compared to last year’s class, who did not have this program, this is a significant improvement. I appreciate all the entities who pulled together to make health and fitness a priority for our third graders.”

Skelly saw similar results, with their teachers saying, “Thank you for all the work you did for the EWOW project for third grade. The kids really enjoyed it and talked about it a lot! Many took lots of pride in their accomplishments.”

Teachers saw the students at Skelly be more aware of their physical activity during the school day, as well as pay more attention to what they were eating. They do brain breaks and the kids seemed to work hard and be more active during them because of the program.

Blackmore third grade teachers added that, “the kids really enjoyed learning about being healthy. They loved the pedometers a lot. I think it would be neat to graph their step totals as a class next time. I would also like to integrate what was taught in the gym and teach in the classroom. I believe there was some math, science, and writing standards being integrated. I think it was a great program.”

At the end of the program, SBA staff had 31 tracking journals returned for a $5 QT gift card.

The idea for doing this with third graders was that they were at the age where they are starting to have independence and make decisions.

The EWOW committee wanted to get the program, which is a partnership between the SBA Foundation’s Mary K. Connell Fund for Wellness, YMCA and USD 490, back into the schools, and specifically, work more directly with students. The program lasted five weeks at each of the schools.