Mississippi Miracles Radiothon raising funds, awareness for Children's
Published on Thursday, March 1, 2018
By: Annie Oeth
Eleven radio stations broadcasting live from the Batson Children’s Hospital lobby, a country singer/songwriter and his band performing, and Children’s of Mississippi patients and their families sharing their stories.
That can only mean its Mississippi Miracles Radiothon week. Kicked off at 6 a.m. Wednesday morning with live radio broadcasts by The Radio People stations and live news coverage by WJTV, the 17th annual Radiothon is underway through 7 p.m. Friday, when patients will hold up posterboard signs revealing the total amount raised.
During the Mississippi Miracles Radiothon, The Radio People stations US 96.3, Mix 98.7, Y101.7 and 100.9 The Legend from Jackson, River 101.3, K104.5 and 92.7 The Touch of Vicksburg, and 97 OKK, Q 101, 105.7 The Beat and Kiss 104.1 of Meridian broadcast from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. each day from the lobby of the state’s only children’s hospital.
“This is the best work we do all year,” said John Anthony, program director for Mix 98.7. “The radio stations help the community all year, for storm recovery and all sorts of community needs, but the Radiothon is special. You can look at Batson Children’s Hospital and see the donations at work and helping Mississippi’s children.”
To make a donation, call (601) 984-KIDS or text BATSON to 51555.
Singer/songwriter Eric Paslay and his band stopped by Wednesday for a live performance on US 96.3 before heading to play for patients and their families in a Batson Children’s Hospital activity room.
Known for hits such as “Friday Night,” Paslay wanted to visit the station Wednesday as part of a trip through Jackson, but U.S. 96.3 Program Director Nikki Brown said she’d be at the Mississippi Miracles Radiothon that day.
“He said, ‘That’s my thing! I visit children’s hospitals,’” she said.
Paslay, at 10, was diagnosed with Type I diabetes, so children’s health care is a cause he supports, he said. “For Type I diabetes, the biggest thing is education on care, not only for the parents, but the patients.”
Sharing the interview on US 96.3 with Paslay was Batson Children’s Hospital patient Shelby Young of Sumrall, who also has Type I diabetes, and her mother, Kim.
When asked how having Type I diabetes affects her life, Shelby replied, “It makes me stronger.” Young is Miss Mississippi High School America.
Said Kim Young, “Without this hospital, I don’t know where we’d be.”
Last year’s Radiothon raised a record $504,360 in pledges, many of them at the Miracle Giving Club rate of $20 a month, or 65 cents a day. The event is the largest fundraiser for Children’s of Mississippi, an umbrella organization that includes Batson Children’s Hospital and all UMMC pediatric care.
“Each year, thousands of Mississippians from all walks of life come together to help children,” said Jen Hospodor, director of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and Community Based Fundraising at UMMC. “We are so thankful for the generosity and caring of so many. Their donations help Batson Children’s Hospital all year long.”