Former Wichita State University men’s basketball standout and current New York Knicks player Ron Baker has agreed to serve as a celebrity champion for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at Via Christi Health.
His role in helping raise awareness of the efforts by CMN Hospitals at Via Christi to benefit sick and injured children was announced May 9 at the WSU baseball game.
“Ron Baker epitomizes the values of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and those of Via Christi as an Ascension ministry—integrity, reverence and dignity. He is a remarkable role model for children with his own inspirational comeback story from a sports injury to competing in the NCAA Final Four,” said Kara Warkentine, who leads the philanthropic program for Via Christi. “His strong character and faith-based family values closely align with our nonprofit Catholic mission.”
Baker’s outstanding career at Wichita State University solidified him as a “hometown hero” and fans in communities across the state of Kansas are engaged and proud to see him succeed in the National Basketball Association with the New York Knicks.
“I am pleased to support this program because it’s important to me to help kids realize their dreams,” Baker said. “Going through life as a small-town Kansas kid and now being in the position to help other Kansas kids means a lot to me and my family.”
Via Christi annually serves 50,000 children in Kansas and since 1988, has been a member of the nationally-recognized Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. The CMNH network includes 170 member hospitals, providing 32 million treatments each year to kids across the U.S. and Canada. Via Christi’s CMNH program spans the western part of the state, including Ron’s hometowns of Utica and Scott City. CMNH at Via Christi provides direct family assistance to children served by Via Christi’s hospitals and clinics and provides funding for critically necessary equipment and supplies to enhance hospital care and staff education for clinicians who serve kids. Donations stay local helping Kansas kids.
About Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at Via Christi Health
Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at Via Christi Health provides necessary equipment, supplies, and education at our three local hospitals and various clinics. Additionally, it serves 64 counties in southcentral and western Kansas by providing direct medical assistance to children and their families for needs not covered by insurance — things like travel costs for families taking children to see specialists, prescriptions, and medical equipment.
About Via Christi Health
In Kansas, Ascension’s Via Christi Health operates nine hospitals and 75 other sites of care and employs more than 6,000 associates. Across the state, Via Christi provided more than $77.8 million in community benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2016. Serving Kansas for more than 135 years, Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the largest non-profit health system in the U.S. and the world’s largest Catholic health system, operating 2,500 sites of care – including 141 hospitals and more than 30 senior living facilities – in 24 states and the District of Columbia. Visit www.viachristi.org