One of the most common questions that we get is “How does a child become a Dream Experience recipient?” Well we wouldn’t be able to do it without any of our referral partners!
We are so fortunate to be partnered with seven different hospitals/organizations within the Charlotte, NC and Atlanta, GA areas. It is with our referral partners help that we are able to make Dreams come true for so many local children. The recommendation comes from the child’s treating physician, child life specialist, or social worker. These individuals spend hours with their patients and know more about them than just their diagnosis. They know all their favorites: color, food, book, subject in school, and most importantly for us, their favorite sports team. Our referral partner then contacts us with their biggest sport enthusiast – and we mean biggest! The Dream Kids we serve often know everything about their favorite team or player, from the player roster to individual stats, if you want to know something they’ll be able to tell you.
Knowing that their patient has a favorite team or athlete is just one half of the puzzle though. We rely on our referral partners to refer children or young adults that meet our medical criteria. To qualify for a Dream Experience the individual must have a chronic illness, life-altering condition, or an intellectual 0r developmental disability. The hospitals and organizations that we have partnered with are able to ensure that their patient meets this medical eligibility. They know their patients forward and backwards, which is important when it comes to possible travel accommodations or special considerations that might have to be made for their sports experience.
We love working with our referral partners! They’re a great system of support daily for our Dream Kids and when they find out one of their patients is getting a Dream Experience they are just as excited as we are. We try to keep them in the loop (without spoiling too many surprises) and they even come to Dream Sendoffs if they can. It’s amazing to see how invested they are in these kids and we truly couldn’t do it without them!
Charlotte Region Referral Partners
- Levine Children’s Hospital (Charlotte, NC)
- Jeff Gordon Children’s Hospital (Concord, NC)
- St. Jude Affiliate Clinic at Novant Health Hemby Children’s Hospital (Charlotte, NC)
- The Arc of North Carolina, Mecklenburg County
- DDR – Developmental Disabilities Resources
- InReach – Residential & Support Services Inc.
Atlanta Region Referral Partners
- Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta