The Herbie Fund at SickKids: Our Past, Present and Future
Herbie Quinones of Brooklyn, New York, was born with a rare birth deficit that made it difficult for him to breathe. He needed a unique operation that was only available at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. SickKids surgeons offered to perform the surgery without a fee, but Herbie's family could not afford to pay the other hospital costs.
After reading about Herbie in the newspaper, Paul and Gina Godfrey rallied friends and corporations to donate money generously to cover Herbie's hospital costs. In February 1979, seven-month-old Herbie received his life-saving operation, and Herbie Fund was established.
Over 777 children from 106 countries have received specialized medical and surgical assistance through the fund. The number of children helped depends entirely on the amount of money donated and unfortunately there are always more applications than the fund can support. Each year, Herbie Fund makes surgeries possible thanks to the generous support of the community and the dedication of clinicians in a wide range of medical divisions at SickKids. The Hospital for Sick Children is proud to share that all of the physicians donate their time and expertise; therefore, they waive their surgical fees. This is their gift to the children and helps to ensure we can extend the Herbie Funds support to more children.
Today, Herbie Quinones is now thriving and thanks to Herbie Fund, hundreds more children are living longer, more productive lives. Together we can help many more children and shape the future of communities all over the world.