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Cathy Harrison

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Gift of Life Los Angeles
April 24, 2011

Gift of Life Los Angeles is an inspiring organization that epitomizes the true essence of a non-profit organization.

Under the extraordinary leadership of GOL-Los Angeles’s president, Brenda Small, this organization has saved the lives of over 100 children, whom otherwise would have died, had GOL-Los Angeles not initiated its charitable efforts to help children born with congenital heart disease in El Salvador. Brenda’s brilliance, unwavering dedication, and infinite energy are the basis of GOL-LA’s success.

My daughter has been to El Salvador a couple of times to provide hands-on support to the pediatric surgical team, the anxious families, and the children. She has seen children whose pallor was so blue because of their CHD made worse because of the lack of proper nutrition, and the anguish on the parent’s faces knowing that their child will die if they don’t receive that vital, life-saving surgery. She has visited their homes with no running water or electricity---AND she has seen many of these children given a second chance at life all because of the humanitarian efforts GOL-Los Angeles. In addition to receiving the necessary surgery, children and families now receive nutritional and hygienic aid, and in some cases, homes are rebuilt to provide a healthier environment.

Last summer, we were a host family to a 12 year old and his mother. As a host “mom,” I had the unforgettable experience of walking side-by-side a mother whose son wouldn’t see adulthood if he didn’t have open-heart surgery. And every step we took, Brenda and GOL-Los Angeles was there to support us.

I am awestruck as to how much Brenda and GOL-Los Angeles has accomplished and the profound impact this organization has made on hundred of lives----my family’s life included.

A Chinese proverb says, “ A child’s life is like a piece of paper on which every person leaves a mark.”

Gift Of Life-Los Angeles leaves the most important mark of all ---literally the gift of a life.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Fund raising, being a Host Mom for GOL L.A.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Nothing, GOL L.A. is amazing!

MY ROLE:
Volunteer & Host Mom in 2010.