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Spirit Halloween raises $113,305 for UC Davis in 2021, topping previous year’s total

Spirit Halloween did it again, generating another record-breaking donation for UC Davis Children’s Hospital. The 2021 in-store fundraiser raised $113,305 for the Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department, which supports the emotional needs of patients and families. It’s  a focus shared by Spirit Halloween’s Spirit of Children program.

Spirit Halloween and Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy staff celebrate the retailer’s fundraising efforts.

“The mission of Spirit Halloween and child life align. We work together to make the hospital less scary,” said Diana Sundberg, UC Davis Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy manager. “We cannot thank the Spirit team enough for their hard work and partnership with the community to raise the funds year after year. We could not have made this progress – especially with our fellowship program – without them.”

Annual donations from Spirit Halloween’s Spirit of Children foundation fund the child life fellowship program, which provides additional training and supervision to aspiring certified child life specialists. The UC Davis Child Life Fellowship program has provided 20 six-month child life fellowships over the past 11 years.

“With the support of the local Spirit Halloween under Shanda, we’ve been able to grow the fellowship program and expand the reach of child life within the institution,” Sundberg said. “The funding encouraged child life service growth in the Children’s Surgery Center, Radiology and the Pediatric Infusion Center, resulting in more children and families receiving support and guidance from child life specialists.” 

The specialty retail store has donated more than $700,000 to UC Davis Children’s Hospital during the past decade, with every cent going toward the Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department.

Shanda Pishione-Pierce from Spirit Halloween, left, speaks to Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy staff at the check presentation.

“When Diana shared the total number of fellows that have been able to go through the program due to Spirit Halloween, we were astounded,” said Spirit Halloween store operator Shanda Pishione-Pierce. “We are so proud Spirit Halloween customers, fans and staff members in Northern California have been able to touch the lives of so many children, parents, siblings and staff at UC Davis Children’s Hospital.”