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Annual Auction Raises More Than $390,000 in Support of SIBSPlace

Posted: Jul. 15, 2014

The 2014 SIBSPlace (Survivorship in Brothers and Sisters) Annual Auction held recently at The Seawane Club in Hewlett Harbor (NY) raised more than $390,000 in support of the program. An essential community service of South Nassau Communities Hospital, SIBSPlace is celebrating its 14th year of free service to families throughout Nassau County.

Rajiv Datta, M.D., FACS chair of the Department of Surgery, director of the Division of Surgical Oncology and of Head & Neck Surgery, and medical director of the Gertrude & Louis Feil Cancer Center at South Nassau, was the esteemed honoree.

The event, spearheaded by a committee of community members, was co-chaired by Donna Baron, Karen Lentin and Susan Schneider. Approximately 300 guests, including residents of the communities served by South Nassau, physicians and hospital administrators, bid on over 200 featured live and silent auction items. A watercolor self-portrait by world-renowned artist Chuck Close, who was in attendance, topped the bidding at $21,000.

SIBSPlace is a free therapeutic support program for well children living with a brother or sister with cancer or another devastating illness, or a parent with cancer. The program, the first of its kind in the nation when it was launched in 2000, encourages expression, self-awareness and the development of coping skills for children ages 5 to 17.

The goal of SIBSPlace is to help children understand and cope with feelings they are experiencing due to a sibling or parent suffering with cancer or other type of devastating illness. SIBSPlace provides a comprehensive program of support and guided recreation in which personal needs, unexpressed feelings and confusing experiences can be addressed by the well siblings. A typical visit includes homework support, dinner, therapeutic art and verbal activities, psycho-educational group interaction, mentoring and tutoring. Other special activities include animal therapy and field trips to local attractions.