Making Miracles with a Dream Factory
In honour of Miracle Weekend, BC Children’s Hospital has invited Channing Rodman - blogger, social media strategist and all-round superstar - to join the Miracle Weekend team as an online host on Sunday, June 3rd. Channing is not only a social media strategist; she’s a brand new parent. Since 2005 she has specialized in digital solutions including online fundraising for youth health education in Quebec, spreading awareness about human rights in Europe and supporting midwives in Vancouver. For fun, she writes and illustrates a storytelling blog for children (and their tired parents) about the Dream Factory. It’s a website worth a visit, at least, if you dream big and believe in the imagination and creativity of children.
During Miracle Weekend, Channing will be watching for your online posts and tweets of support to the families who depend on BC Children's Hospital. You never know, she might put your story live, on air! With under a week to go until Miracle Weekend, we decided to sit down with Channing and learn a little more about what makes her own miracle-making tick.
Do you have a personal connection to BC Children’s Hospital?
Like many panicky first time parents, I've already visited the emergency room there with my baby (it all ended well!) I was really impressed with our experience there - everyone was so efficient but at the same time so kind and reassuring. I'd donated to BCCHF before I became a parent but spending just a little bit of time there really brought home how the hospital supports so many parents and kids just like mine - not to mention families in more complicated health situations - every day.
What are you most curious about Miracle Weekend?
Naturally, I can't wait to hear other parent's stories! But I'm also really curious to learn more about all the diverse work the staff at the hospital does. For example, some of my neighbours turn out to be researchers at BCCH working on cures to childhood diseases. Until I met them, I hadn't really thought about the fact that the hospital does so much more than urgent care. It's important work!
Your background involves working with young people and new mums. What draws you to these communities?
Hah, well, I definitely have a personal grounding in both communities. But I also think that stories from both of these communities tend to be dismissed by so many other groups - and yet young people and parents have so much to tell us about who we are as a community right now, and where our future lies. It's important to me to help their voices be heard.
What’s the Dream Factory all about?
The Dream Factory is a free storytelling blog I started for kids and their tired parents. When I was little and had a bad dream, my mom would use my red toy rotary telephone to make a customer service call for me to the Dream Factory...and she'd really let them have it! Watching my mom demand better dreams for me was so empowering that the bad dreams always went away after a Dream Factory call. Nowadays, the Dream Factory's customer service is on Twitter as @dreamfeedback and has a corporate blog run by Ace, a friendly sleep sheep (you know, one of the sheep people count to fall asleep?) If your kid is having bad dreams, complain to Ace at firstname.lastname@example.org - she'll write back, and you might even get on the blog!
Do you have a mom motto?
Value what other parents and kids can teach you, laugh with your kid, and eat good chocolate.
What about your life motto?
Spread discussion and compassion. And, um, did I mention chocolate?
The 25th annual BC Children's Hospital Miracle Weekend is a televised two-day celebration that showcases the best of BC Children's Hospital: patients, their families, caregivers and supporters who come from every corner of BC. Tune in to watch, live on Global BC - Saturday, June 2 from 7pm until 5:30pm on Sunday, June 3, 2012.