Doernbecher Children’s Hospital patients design Nike shoes at auction

PORTLAND, OR (KGW) — Doernbecher Freestylea creative fundraising effort involving young patient-designers and Nike, is in its 18th year. And after a few years of the pandemic being relegated to an online-only event, Friday night’s rally was a party.

“It’s my favorite event of any year, anytime, and to be back in person is absolutely fantastic,” said Doernbecher’s chief medical officer, Dr. Dana Braner.

Braner explained that OHSU Children’s Hospital doesn’t turn anyone away based on their ability to pay, so this fundraising partnership with Nike is very important.

At the event, shoes designed by half a dozen children who benefited from Doernbecher’s care are on display, intended to be auctioned off and then sold to the masses online and at Nike retail stores nationwide.

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Emerson Harrell, 15, is one of six youngsters who showed off their shoes for 2022.

“I’m a huge shoe lover, I love collecting shoes, I love wearing shoes and I also love Nike, so it worked,” said Harrell, who worked with a team of Nike pros to create its design.

So does 11-year-old Coley Miller, who has branched out beyond shoes.

“I made my shoes, pants and backpack from my culture and homeland, and added my favorite colors and made the basket patterns on them,” said Miller.

Every penny raised from the Doernbecher Freestyle XVIII auction and shoe retail will help a hospital that saves the lives of children like Miller, who said he was honored to help.

“Really important – since I was born, I was at Doernbecher and OHSU a lot, and so I felt good about it,” said the young designer.

The keyword for the Friday night event: “Cool”, voiced by children and adults.

“We will be caring for over 80,000 children this year and every one of them is a super star. Tonight these six kids are showing the world what a super star they are, and I think that’s cool,” said Braner, who added that the highlight of the evening was hearing the six kids share their stories of struggles, strength and perseverance. .

Click here to find out more about how you can help the mission of Doernbecher Children’s Hospital.

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