BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — "I’ll be quite honest with you, we were scared. It was our little girl in there," said Kenny Williams.
When she was just six years old, Kenny's daughter Isabel spent nearly a week in the hospital being treated for pneumonia.
“They had monitors on her, they were trying to get her oxygen level up and she was having some pretty tough times," said Kenny.
Today, six years later, you’ll see cardboard cutouts of Isabel at Costco.
“I basically help other people understand the importance of the hospitals," she said.
Isabel is an ambassador for the Children’s Miracle Network. They raise funds and awareness for the kids and babies being treated at Memorial Hospital.
“I feel really honored and happy to do this, especially because I had such a big and stressful time in the hospital," said Isabel.
About two weeks ago, Isabel’s teacher Russ Sempel saw her cutouts.
“I walked in and I saw Izzy in a cutout and I thought, 'That girl looks familiar!'” said Russ.
He learned more and wanted to help.
“I’m really grateful for him actually because it’s really big and important, what he’s doing," said Isabel.
Stockdale Elementary School is now hosting a fundraiser for the Children's Miracle Network Thursday and Friday. Eight canisters will be out as parents drop off their kids and during recess.
“It brings kindness to others. Unconditionally. So you know, that’s really what we want to build in our students. Character," said Russ.
Children’s Miracle Network program director Robin Woodward said proceeds not only help the hospital but the kids themselves.
"It’s an important part of healing because these kids, if they are having fun while they’re at the hospital, they’re going to heal faster," she said.
And Isabel said it’s rewarding to help kids going through the same thing she did.
“Imagine all the other kids who are in there and having to suffer just like me," she said. "I think thinking about the kids and how to help them is really important.”
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