2017 is a big year for Elmore Public Relations—we’re celebrating our 25th anniversary! For the past 25 years, our agency has been working with numerous clients to help them achieve their goals, or as we say – connecting strategy, expertise and results. Each week we’re highlighting a year of Elmore PR.
Thanks again for joining us! Last week, we took a sweet trip down memory lane with some of our former Elmore PR teammates and asked them to share some of their favorite lessons and memories from their time at the agency. This week, we’re excited to welcome The Periwinkle Foundation’s Executive Director, Doug Suggitt, for a special Q+A session.
The Periwinkle Foundation is an incredible organization that builds programs that help support children, teens and families touched by cancer and other life-threatening illnesses who are being treated at Texas Children’s Hospital here in Houston. Their impact stretches beyond the inner-loop and connects families through arts, camps and survivor programs. We sat down with their Executive Director Doug Suggitt to dig in on his favorite memories and hopes for the organization:
Q: How has The Periwinkle Foundation evolved since 2012?
We’ve had tremendous growth and impact since 2012. Our programs went from reaching 4,000 to 14,000 children, teens and families annually, and brand awareness has also enhanced in large part due to our partnership with Elmore PR. Over the past five years, we’ve secured stronger corporate and community partners along with tremendous volunteer support. They are the ones who help make our camps, arts and survivor programs possible.
Q: What are some of the ways Periwinkle has expanded its reach since 2012?
The number of camps we offer annually has increased to include Camp Periwinkle Days and Camp Periwinkle in the City for those who can’t attend our camps in Burton. We’ve also recently expanded the Periwinkle Arts In Medicine program to Texas Children’s clinics in Katy and The Woodlands as well as Vannie Cook Children’s Clinic in McAllen, Texas.
Q: What is your favorite part about representing Periwinkle?
Seeing the impact that our programs make in the lives of children and families we serve and being a part of a life changing movement is very motivating professionally and personally. The kids motivate volunteers, staff and our organization as a whole. Another one of my favorite parts is being able to work directly with the long-term survivors. A number of them now volunteer at Camp Periwinkle and with the Periwinkle Arts In Medicine program, continuing to make all of these events possible.
Q: What is the impact Periwinkle’s programs have on kids and families touched by cancer and other blood disorders?
Periwinkle programs give children and families independence. They provide outlets for self-expression and build strong bonds between each other, as well as connect families going through this cancer journey.
Q: Could you share a favorite memory or event during your time at Periwinkle?
There are a lot of them actually! But one memory that stands out is at the first camp I attended, Family Camp. There was a little girl named Jessie, and it was her first time at camp. She was very shy and clung to her mother at all times, but as the weekend went on she kept opening up more. By the time it was Sunday and time to leave, she didn’t want to go home! The whole point of Family Camp is getting young campers comfortable with the idea of going to Camp Periwinkle for a full week without their families. She’s now attending Camp YOLO and is an independent young lady. Seeing her grow from a shy little girl to a confident and independent young lady is one of the most memorable moments. It’s the magic of Camp Periwinkle.
Q: What’s your hope for the organization in the next 25 years?
My hope for Periwinkle is to continue our growth and the impact we make in the community. I hope we continue to expand with Texas Children’s across the state, but our goal and vision is to take Periwinkle programs internationally! Texas Children’s manages clinics worldwide, so we’d love to reach kids all over the globe with our programs.
Thank you again to Doug for sharing his memories and dreams for Periwinkle! If you’d like to see The Periwinkle Foundation’s programs in action, make sure to mark your calendar for the Making A Mark® Exhibit Opening on October 7.
Join us next week as we dig into our work with longtime client, Harris County Flood Control District. See you then!