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AIA Architects on a Mission to Bring Happiness and Cheer to the Young Patients at the Florida Hospital for Children in Orlando

By Laurence E. Parisi, AIA

A very special event took place during the 2017 AIA Conference in Orlando, for which I was privileged to be a part.  The mission of this event, sponsored by the Andersen Window Company under the auspices of the Cheeriodical Children’s Foundation, was to bring happiness to children receiving medical care at the Florida Hospital for Children.

When asked by Gary Messiano, Business Architectural Representative for Andersen Windows, to be part of this great program, I admit I was a bit apprehensive. The thought fhfc_new_name_exterior_-_vertical_1of children with serious medical issues makes me deeply saddened. However, after learning about all the good the Cheeriodicals organization does, I accepted this mission to bring happiness and comfort to children facing hardship.

When the conference floor opened on_DSC0106 Thursday, volunteers for the Cheeriodical event gathered at the Andersen Window display and started preparing gift boxes by filling them with toys, games, puzzles, plush animals, and many other fun items.  All day long, there were many architects, students and other vendors stopping by and helping prepare gift boxes.  The boxes were tailored for children of all ages and genders. By the end of Thursday, we had prepared approximately 150 boxes. Continue reading