BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--At today’s Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat game, more than 100 volunteers from UnitedHealth Group and Boston Celtics Legend Leon Powe created and assembled 1,000 Project Sunshine Creative Arts & Craft Kits. These packages contain educational and entertaining crafts to provide children facing significant medical challenges some much-needed fun.
This “Sending Sunshine” event is one of several programs that Project Sunshine has created to help children be children while they are undergoing medical care. Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart will visit patients at Boston Children’s Hospital and personally deliver the arts kits with UnitedHealth Group employees.
“We are happy to collaborate with Project Sunshine to bring smiles to children who are experiencing health challenges,” said Stephen Farrell, CEO, UnitedHealthcare of New England. “Project Sunshine shares our mission to help people live healthier lives, and provides a great opportunity to engage our employee volunteers.”
Since beginning its relationship with Project Sunshine in 2010, more than 13,200 UnitedHealth Group volunteers have created 63,000 Arts and Crafts Kits and 18,300 “Sunny Grams” for pediatric patients across the country. These volunteers have supported more than 23,000 children and their families. The Boston Celtics and Optum, a UnitedHealth Group company, are committed to working together over the next five years for the betterment of the greater Boston community through joint-volunteer efforts at schools, hospitals and playgrounds.
About Project Sunshine
Project Sunshine (www.projectsunshine.org) is a non-profit organization that provides free educational, recreational and social programs to children facing medical challenges and their families. Project Sunshine recruits, trains and coordinates a dynamic and dedicated corps of more than 15,000 volunteers to bring programming – recreational (arts), educational (tutoring and mentoring) and social service (HIV and nutritional counseling) – to 100,000 children facing medical challenges and their families in 175 cities across the United States and in four international locations: Canada, China, Israel and Kenya. Volunteers selflessly donate their time to create program materials and deliver programs. Working onsite, volunteers relieve the anxiety of the young patients and in a context of fun and play, foster in them the courage and coping skills necessary to confront procedures that lie ahead. Project Sunshine volunteers spread sunshine, restoring a crucial sense of normalcy to the pediatric healthcare environment.
About UnitedHealth Group
UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) is a diversified health and well-being company dedicated to helping people live healthier lives and making health care work better. UnitedHealth Group offers a broad spectrum of products and services through two distinct platforms: UnitedHealthcare, which provides health care coverage and benefits services; and Optum, which provides information and technology-enabled health services. Through its businesses, UnitedHealth Group serves more than 85 million people worldwide. For more information, visit UnitedHealth Group at www.unitedhealthgroup.com or follow @UnitedHealthGrp on Twitter.
About the Boston Celtics
A charter member of the Basketball Association of America (which evolved into the National Basketball Association) since 1946, the Boston Celtics have won a record 17 NBA Championships, including eight (8) in a row from 1959-1966, winning their first title in 1957 and their most recent in 2008. The Celtics have long stood for equality, and respect, including hiring the first African American Coach and starting the first all black starting five. In addition, 35 former Celtics players, management or staff have been inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. In December 2002 the team returned to local ownership for the first time since 1963. For more information on the Celtics, log on to www.celtics.com.