"Under the vision and hard work of my sister-in-law Stacey Haskins, Heart and Sole was formed to provideChildren's Hospital of Georgia Heart Program with the tools and support needed to continue to provide outstanding care to other children who suffer from health conditions similar to Bowen’s."
Ben McElreath, Bowen's Father
Heart and Sole, Inc. is a 501c3 non-profit organization that benefits The Children's Hospital of Georgia. Our hope is that we can help every child that has a special heart for lifetimes to come.
Heart and Sole Inc. supports the following departments in financial donations:
- Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
- Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU)
- Childlife Specialist (including Camp Strong Heart)
- Pediatric Cardiology
- General Surgery
The letter from Bowen's father, Ben McElreath, to the staff at MCGHealth
Heart and Sole, Inc. is a vital part of my life. As with so many young couples anticipating the arrival of their firstborn, our thoughts were filled with finishing the nursery, purchasing the baby a perfect take-home outfit and properly securing the infant seat in the car for the trip back home. We knew this baby would change our lives. We just did not know she would change it in this way.
As soon as Bowen was born, she struggled to live. Bowen was quickly transferred to the technologically advanced Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at MCGHealth Children's Hospital of Georgia where we were awed by the staff's world-class care and exceptional skill. Everyone of the doctors and nurses worked tirelessly to cure Bowen. We prayed and anguished as we waited for her health to improve. We also tried to remain strong despite knowing the severity of her sickness.Bowen fought bravely. However, in the end, Bowen did not go home to her freshly painted nursery in her new car seat but instead returned to her Heavenly home.
I share her story and our experience to not only illustrate the impact Bowen had on our lives and so many others but to honor and recognize the special place and people that make up Children's Hospital of Georgia. We cherish our memories there because that was Bowen’s life: thirteen days; 10 of those spent at MCG under their exceptional care and supervision. And, as some may be led to believe, we are not bitter, resentful nor discouraged but, in contrast, we are grateful. We are grateful for the specialized services they provide to children in need.
That is why Heart and Sole, Inc. was created. Under the vision and hard work of my sister-in-law Stacey Haskins, Heart and Sole was formed to provide Children's Hospital of Georgia Heart Program with the tools and support needed to continue to provide outstanding care to other children who suffer from health conditions similar to Bowen’s. Besides providing medical support, our hope is that it will also provide support to other first time parents who anticipate a healthy baby and then quickly realize the stresses associated with being a parent of a critically ill child.
For several decades, The Children's Hospital of Georgia has been delivering outstanding medical and surgical care to thousands of children with special hearts. Funding raised through Heart and Sole, Inc. allows medical equipment to be updated, lectureships to build on current knowledge and research to be performed. Activities are also provided such as a week long camp durning the summer for children with special hearts, Camp Strong Heart. We all know and believe in the Children's Hospital of Georgia. Together, the medical and admistration staff provides balanced health care for the patients and their families. This program evolved from the commitment of incredible physicians and loving families with children that have the LOVE for our Children's Hospital of Georgia! We thank them from the bottom of our hearts!
Board of Directors:
Ben McElreath Jr.
Dr. Robyn Hatley
Ben McElreath Sr.
Stacey H. Garner