Discovery Arts is pleased and honored to announce that they have received a generous gift from the Cherese Mari Laulhere Foundation. This gift will help the 501(c)(3) non-profit organization continue to bring the healing power of the arts to children with cancer, serious blood disorders and life threatening illnesses while they are hospitalized for treatment at 6 southern California hospitals.
The Cherese Mari Laulhere Foundation’s 2014 grant will help Discovery Arts continue its mission and assist in the development and growth of Discovery Arts’ hospital programs. It is their goal to reach even more critically ill children this year, who are undergoing treatment for life threatening illnesses.
“Cherese was a beautiful girl with a very giving heart… we are so grateful to her for helping us grow and care for so many children who are suffering with cancer and life threatening illness….we will always be indebted to her and to her loving parents, Chris and Larry Laulhere.”, said Discovery Arts Executive Director Marilyn Clements.
The Cherese Mari Laulhere Foundation was established in 1996, in honor of 21 year old Cherese Mari Laulhere whose first name means “Beloved”, after her tragic death during an accident in Agra, India while on a Semester at Sea trip.
The mission of the foundation is to provide funding and support to charitable organizations whose goals and activities are in concert with those founded and supported by Cherese Mari Laulhere. Her family started her foundation in her name so that they may help bring alive Cherese’s dreams.
From Long Beach, CA Cherese attended Cypress College for 2 years then studied as a geography major at UCLA. She was very interested in social and political issues and often expressed a deep concern for those who were less fortunate. She focused her studies and efforts on how she could help, especially children. Her foundation furthers her dedication of making a difference, “I have a dream, that people do not fight over things that are not necessary, my dream is that there is peace.”, taken from a statement written by Cherese when she was in elementary school. “Cherese gave all her heart and soul with compassion, sincerity and love. The beauty upon her smiling face was a reflection of all things beautiful within her. We all miss her so much.”, states her family on the foundations website at http://cherese.org/
Discovery Arts brings the healing power of the arts to more than 3,500 critically ill children each year with programs at Mattel Children’s Hospital at UCLA, Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach, Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center at Millers, CHOC Children’s Hospital, Fountain Valley Regional Hospital and Medical Center CHOC at Mission in Southern California and Mercy Children’s Hospital in Springfield, Missouri. The generous gift from the Cherese Mari Laulhere Foundation will be an intricate part of helping Discovery Arts reach even more children with new “Arts Adventures” this year.
Discovery Arts was created in 1993 by a dedicated group of entertainment industry professionals who began volunteering their time and talents to bring music, dance, art and drama to children with cancer, serious blood disorders and life threatening illness while they are in the hospital receiving treatment.
In recognition of the powerful impact of the arts on these children, Discovery Arts was formally incorporated as a 501(c)(3) non-profit agency in 1998 with a mission to expand the delivery of “Arts Adventures” to many more children in many more hospitals. “Our dream is to provide Arts Adventures to every child who is battling a life threatening illness while they are in the hospital. All of Discovery Arts’ programs and services are free of charge to the hospitals, patients and their families. We rely on the generosity of individuals, corporations and foundations like the Cherese Mari Laulhere Foundation to sustain and grow.” states Marilyn Clements, Executive Director of Discovery Arts.
Visit the Cherese Mari Laulhere Foundation
We are honored to have received this wonderful review on Great Non Profits from Wendy Grant. Her daughter, Sarah is a survivor of Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. With heartfelt appreciation we wanted to share her words with you ...
Sarah was diagnosed at 14 months old with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. She spent 26 months in treatment only to relapse 11 days later with a rare leukemic infiltrate in the iris of her eye. Sarah would go through another rigorous 28 months of chemo and radiation therapy. With painful treatments and days on end spent in the hospital, Sarah looked forward to Wednesdays knowing that Discovery Arts would be there welcoming her with a costume an fun things to do.
When Sarah was at her lowest Discovery Arts would nurture her spirit and encourage the artist within her. She would sing and dance enjoying each moment with the incredible loving members of Discovery Arts.
Sarah had less than a 40% chance of survival and we believe that the positive energy and healing properties of the arts helped Sarah to win her battle with cancer. The joy they brought her and us is priceless. They were integral in Sarah's recovery and because of their love and encouragement 9 years later Sarah is cancer free and continues to perform as both a ballerina with Southland Ballet Academy / Festival Ballet Theater and as a singer.
Thank you Marilyn and friends for loving us and caring enough to help children like Sarah, your legacy lives on through these incredible children.
Wendy, Howard, & Sarah Grant
To share your story with us please visit Great Non Profits you'd love to hear from you!
We have known these beautiful ladies, Mary Borkett and Marilyn Clements, for the past 5 years. My granddaughter has leukemia and has been a patient at Long Beach Memorial’s Miller’s Children’s Hospital, with stays of up to 21 days.
Costumes, tap shoes, hats, MUSIC, DANCE, CRAFTS! You have no idea how much JOY this brings to children in the hospital fighting cancer! The entire floor lights up with laughter and loud music! The parents, the nurses, the KIDS are dancing in their beds if they can’t actually get out of bed to join the fun!
Mary and Marilyn have a kind and gentle way of bringing a carefree happiness to each child on the floor! The kids can choose a costume and KEEP IT! They can put on all sorts of dress up stuff and just let themselves be free of the sadness and fear for a couple of hours.
Discovery Arts is fantastic idea that, in my opinion, every single hospital should have on their Child Life Roster! The mental welfare of your young cancer patients absolutely deserves to experience Mary and Marilyn’s loving personalities and gifts of joy. You’re doing your hospital a disservice if you don’t have Discovery Arts making these beautiful children happy, even if it’s only once a week!
We know this from experience. My granddaughter is currently a patient at UCLA for a bone marrow transplant and when we found out that our beloved Mary and Marilyn were coming by, none of us could contain our happiness! It made the day for my granddaughter!
You owe YOURSELF the experience! It’s pure heaven to let loose and sing and dance shamelessly surrounded with children dragging their “poles” and smiling from ear to ear!
With love and affection for Mary and Marilyn,
Gloria COOKIE Warren
May 26, 2006
Cookie, we love you!! We have so many wonderful memories with Cookie and Grandma Cookie. It warms our hearts that she has survived and thrived, after all that she went through.
What a blessing it is for us to be able to be there for such a beauty young girl ... We are so proud of her and love her so much!
Executive Director, Discovery Arts
Bringing the healing power of the arts to children who are in the hospital undergoing treatment for cancer or life-threatening illness.