Congratulations to our 2023-24 Grant Recipients! 

Building Friendships Through Philanthropy

Fresh Start Surgical Gifts -- $25,000
Surgery Weekend Program

Program Description:

Funds were used to provide reconstructive and plastic surgery for disadvantaged children and teens at no cost to the patients or their families. These children/teens have significant afflictions which are affecting their lives, whether congenital or due illness, accidents or abuse. By providing this surgery, Fresh Start is dramatically impacting their lives, resulting in improvement in their overall health, increased self-confidence and better school attendance/participation. Our comprehensive, personalized, and long-term medical care empowers our patients to become healthy, confident, and productive adults. 


While the number of children served was slightly below projections due to Covid restrictions which were in place at the hospital, Fresh Start was still able to make a significant impact – 38 children received 88 surgeries; 99 children received 428 dental and orthodontic procedures; 24 children received speech therapy and 7 children received laser treatments. In addition, volunteer medical professionals provided over $2.8 Mil in donated medical care and Rady Children’s Hospital donated the operating suites. Due to the aforementioned restrictions at the hospital, Fresh Start was unable to host the surgical weekends where many of these surgeries are performed on a given weekend. Instead, they were able to adapt by weaving the children’s appointments into weekday schedules, thus ensuring the patients did not miss critical care. The $25,000 grant from the RSFWF enabled Fresh Start Surgical Gifts to provide 172 disadvantaged children with $216,543 in highly specialized medical care. 

Future Plans:

This is an ongoing relationship with Rady Children’s Hospital, and one which we fully expect to continue. Even with the Affordable Care Act, however, thousands of children are still unable to access the highly specialized and long-term medical care Fresh Start Surgical Gifts provides. Therefore, we will continue our outreach efforts with traditional and social media as well as in-person presentations to school districts and social service agencies to increase awareness of Fresh Start as a resource for children in need. What is unique about our organization is that we were bequeathed a significant trust that allows us to pay for all our administrative expenses with the interest from that trust fund; therefore, 100% of monies we raise go to directly to servicing our patients.