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Happy New Year!

Happy New Year Everyone!

It was a great 2022! Since The Larry Prout Jr (The Bear) Courage Fund started fundraising in June of 2022, we have been able to Award 11 grants to C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital patients and their families, totaling $14,000, which includes our first grant recipient family from 2023! Thank you to all who have donated! 100% of funds raised goes to our Mott families! Together we are helping patients and their families at Mott Hospital!

Why is our nonprofit unique?

I believe our nonprofit is unique because of the goal of our mission statement. To put money directly into the pockets of families who are going through life altering medical issues with a child at Mott Hospital, and who have emergency financial needs. Our family has been down this road multiple times. We truly know what it is like. I, (Kathy, Larry’s mom) have applied for approximately 10 or more grants since Larry’s birth, for various things. A recumbent bike for Larry, a hiking/jogger, Make-A-Wish trip, bathroom accommodations remodel, to only name a few. These grants usually require the family applying to write an essay about the grant recipient and family, have letters of recommendation, have references with phone numbers, medical proof, and even send in W2’s and tax returns. In some cases, we would not receive an answer for 18 months. I am completely and truly grateful for grant relief we have received over the years. But it was hard and a lot of work during some very obvious stressful times in our lives. Our nonprofit board and family want to keep things as easy as possible, so we can help as many Mott families as we are able, with a quick turn-around time. We modeled our nonprofit after Fund-A-Life. A local nonprofit whose director, Mark, truly “gets it.” He himself had a very serious life changing health event, and he has chosen to dedicate his life to helping others. Fund-A-Life is a nonprofit that has helped so many families going through various life altering circumstances. They helped our family, and we will always be grateful to them.

Here is an update as we start the New Year.

Larry jr, and family attended several fundraisers throughout the year, and we will continue to do so. We feel it is very important to support local nonprofits and build relationships.

Larry modeled for his 13th year, in the Arc of Livingston Fashion Show in November with his dear friend Gwen. Our friend and Courage Fund board member JT Rogan, continues to be the volunteer/auctioneer at this event. It was an extremely successful fundraiser for the Arc of Livingston County, Michigan and a lot of fun! The Arc supports individuals with disabilities and their families.

Larry and his niece Maddie are in the Mott Hospital Calendar for 2023! They are featured in December and did an autograph signing along with other Mott Hospital patients who are featured in the 2023 calendar. This calendar can be purchased through the Mott Hospital website, and proceeds benefit programs for patients and families through the Wayne and Shelly Jones Family Center.

Larry Jr was nominated for the Evan Newport Hope Award as an outstanding Mott Hospital volunteer since 2015. We are all very proud of Larry Jr!

Larry Jr also received a positive update regarding his feet and the broken pins and hardware removal. In October, we made a trip out to Boston Children’s for a post-surgical visit. Larry’s foot doctor, Dr. Watkins, was very pleased and also relieved with the outcome of the surgery.

During our trip we were able to see some friends and take in a couple of football games. We made a stop in Amherst Massachusetts to see Coach Don and Deborah Brown. Don is the head coach for UMass Football and became a friend of Larry’s during his time with Michigan Football. Coach Don was gracious enough to let us take in a UMass football game and hang out with his family just outside his stadium office. Larry’s buddy Mike McCray, Michigan Football alumni, also coaches at UMass, and it was great to see Mike and his beautiful family!

We then traveled to Foxborough to watch a New England Patriots game. We were gifted game day tickets and field

passes for the Detroit Lions vs the New England Patriots football game, courtesy of the Kraft family, and Larry was so happy to see many of his old Michigan Football friends who now play for the Patriots. We spent time with many of our Boston/Team Impact friends including Dan and Jay and their families. Larry is so grateful and appreciative of such a great experience. Before we left for home we had a tour of Tufts University, where Larry Jr’s great grandfather, Dinger Doane, played football, and the nonprofit Team Impact’s founders, Dan Kraft and Jay Calnan attended school. We ended our time in Boston with a dinner, with many of our cherished Team Impact friends!

Larry and our nonprofit board have business cards, banners and flyers! Thank you, First Impression Printing in Howell for creating and donating these items. With permission from Luann Ewald, Chief Operating Officer of C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, the flyers were distributed to social workers, nurses, and Larry’s medical team! This has really aided in getting the message to families at Mott that help is out there. We are here for them!!

We received a very unique donation this year! For every point that Michigan Football scored this year, Larry’s friend Peter Silveri donated $1! This would make for a very fun way of fundraising during next year’s football season! Thank you to Peter for the donation and the fundraising idea!

Larry’s connection to Michigan Football, through the Boston nonprofit Team Impact, has changed Larry’s life. Toward the end of December, this connection showed itself again! Merrick Weingarten is a University of Michigan, 2020 graduate. Merrick collaborated with Kiwiclo and Michigan Football running back Blake Corum, by creating and selling Blake Corum gear. 50% of the initial drop profits will benefit the Larry Prout Jr (The Bear) Courage Fund. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to Kiwiclo, Merrick and Blake!

We are very excited for 2023 and our goal of giving aid to many more Mott families. We could not do this without the help of our donors. Although we must maintain the privacy of our grant recipients, we can share that we have received many thank you letters from these recipients to all of you! Thank you! Thank you for helping ease the financial stress for so many families, and so many more to come. We have many fundraisers in the works for 2023 and will keep you all informed. We’d love to see you at our upcoming 5K or our Funfest! More to come!!!!!!

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