Superheroes 4 Kids: Annual tradition to help Children’s Miracle Network takes new shape in COVID-19 area

SPOKANE, Wash. — Typically this week, 4 News Now anchors and reporters would be donning superhero costumes to bring smiles to kids at Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital and to raise money for the programs there. COVID-19 may be changing some things, but Superheroes 4 Kids week is still on, as we recognize the need in our community.

For the last several years, 4 News Now has joined the team from West Coast Window Washers to bring this tradition to life. The window washers dress up like superheroes and hang out – literally and figuratively – to bring smiles to the children and their families inside. We also highlight the unique programs and treatments that donations to Children’s Miracle Network has in place to help local kids.

PAST COVERAGE: A super day at Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital

This year, COVID-19 restrictions are in place and with new protocol and limited visitors, we worried Superhero Week wouldn’t happen this year.

“It looks a bit different here,” said Colleen Fox, Chief Philanthropy Officer for Providence Health Foundation. “We’re all wearing masks, we have to limit visitation, so pediatric patients can have two visitors at a time. We’re just doing everything we can to reduce the risk of exposure.”

But, the programs CMN provides are essential to help kids and their families work through difficult times. CMN supports everything from innovative technology to programs like music and art therapy.

“Kids process what they go through with play and creativity,” said Ann Walker with the art therapy program. “It may look like they’re just coloring, painting, playing music. But, they’re really working through their fear, their anxiety, their depression, their anger – all of the different feelings that go along with being hospitalized.”

CMN is one of the largest sources of revenue for the Providence Health Foundation, providing more than a million dollars, mostly in the form of small donations through partners like Panda Express and Walmart.

“All that money gets sent back to Sacred Heart Childrens Hospital so we can provide technology, training and supportive programs to kids in our community,” Fox said.

With some creative thinking and the passion of 4 News Now, CMN and Washington Trust Bank, we’re making some changes but still keeping our commitment to this wonderful tradition. All week, we’ll be highlighting the superhero caregivers who work inside the hospital to bring that diversion and peace of mind to families and children.

You may see some superhero guests throughout the week as well.

“We, every year, look forward to superhero day with our partners at KXLY and Washington Trust,” said Fox. “Of course, this year it looks different. We’re not able to have the superheroes scale down the building like we usually do. We’re so grateful to be able to be creative and approach this in a different way.”

We hope you’ll see the stories and be inspired to give to CMN, knowing that the money stays right here in our community. You can donate now at this link.

PAST COVERAGE: Young patient redefines the meaning of ‘superhero’