Kids’ Chance of America is a non-profit organization that provides scholarships for children whose parent was catastrophically or fatally injured on the job. Since its inception in 1988, Kids’ Chance organizations have awarded over 8,700 scholarships totaling over $30 million. As an insurance carrier who handles catastrophic work injuries every day, Safety National is incredibly passionate about our partnership with Kids’ Chance and the opportunities they provide for families in need.
With this being Kids’ Chance Awareness Week, we asked two of our employees actively involved with the organization to speak to the importance of its vision and how others in the industry can get involved.
The Direct Industry Connection to the Kids’ Chance Mission
As a charitable organization, the goals of Kids’ Chance align perfectly with the workers’ compensation industry. It allows the industry to give back to families whose lives have been significantly impacted by a workplace injury. The organization’s supporters are a unique coalition of groups within the workers’ compensation system, including labor, plaintiff and defense attorneys, medical providers, vendors, members of the insurance industry and other supportive businesses.
“There is nothing more powerful than hearing those scholarship recipients speak,” said Mark Walls, Vice President – Client Engagement at Safety National. “When I have heard these kids share their journey, the room falls silent, and there is not a dry eye to be seen. Their stories always begin with the devastating loss or serious injury of a parent. Often, this tragedy steals their dream of attending college due to affordability. The scholarships that Kids’ Chance provides truly change the lives of these children. They are so grateful to be able to pursue their dreams.”
How You Can Get Involved
With Kids’ Chance organizations in 49 states, almost everyone has a resource to get involved. Industry professionals interested in participation can start by contacting their state chapter of Kids’ Chance, finding out what special events are planned for Awareness Week and referring the program to any student or family in need of assistance. Kids’ Chance established the national “Planning for the Future” initiative in which the organization helps industry professionals identify families of injured workers with children who are not yet of college age and connects them with Kids’ Chance. So, when the time comes, they are connected with their state organization to apply for a scholarship.
“When I first learned of Kids’ Chance, I realized how important it is for members of the workers’ compensation industry to get involved,” said Lisa Haug, Managing Director – Medical Management at Safety National. “It faces the challenges of identifying the children of injured workers who need their support which we can help tackle. I see catastrophic claims come across my desk regularly, so I stay cognizant of the opportunity I have to recommend children to this organization. It has an incredible impact on these families and their quality of life, while also giving these children a sense of hope, love and peace.”