Your Impact: 2020 Philanthropy Report

It takes a team to care for a child.

Your gift to Duke Children’s makes you a vital part of our team, and we couldn’t be more grateful. Your generosity has supported our critical missions of improving clinical care for our patients, performing pediatric research that can help children all over the world, and educating the pediatric providers of tomorrow.

Every dollar donated to Duke Children’s makes a difference in the life of a child. This philanthropy report shows how much your donation matters. We cannot thank you enough for helping build a healthy future for all children.

A graphic icon that says "your support changes lives" featuring the images of children.
An icon of a stethoscope with a heart

In 2020, 158,681 patients visited our outpatient clinics around North Carolina. 

An icon of a hospital

In 2020, 4,854 patients were admitted to our inpatient units at Duke University Hospital. 

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In 2020, 6,121 babies were born at Duke Children's.

Duke Central Tower opens in 2021

In December 2021, nearly all pediatric inpatient units at Duke University Hospital will move to the brand-new Duke Central Tower. The new tower will hold 350 patient beds, nearly 130 of which will be for pediatric care, providing a contemporary and innovative inpatient facility for Duke Children’s patients. Now, one of the nation’s most technologically advanced and sustainable hospitals will offer facilities that combine cutting-edge medical technology, a family-friendly layout, and youth-appropriate décor to help our youngest patients. 

Children’s units will be housed on the first four floors of the Duke Central Tower, which in total stands 11 stories tall and covers 490,000 square feet. The new space will house the very latest in medical technology, new surgical, diagnostic and treatment rooms, and a host of family-friendly amenities. Perkins + Will Architects, Inc. designed the hospital addition to provide the flexibility to adapt as technology evolves while offering more privacy and space for families.  

Everyday Impact: Eat, Shop and Support

Duke Children’s is a proud member of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, which creates strategic partnerships with more than 650 organizations and businesses in the Triad, Triangle and Wilmington areas to support Duke Children’s. In 2020, CMN Hospitals programs raised $2,654,257 to support the areas of greatest need at Duke Children’s, including patient and family support and community health projects.

A graph showing CMN Hospitals Fundraising

An Impact Story: CMN Hospital Funds Save Hearts in the Community

In 2018, several providers at the Duke Children's Pediatric and Congenital Heart Center were awarded a Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Kids Care Grant to start a North Carolina affiliate of the national Project ADAM program. Project ADAM advocates for the placement of and provides training in automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) and cardiac emergency preparedness in schools and youth centers. 

Every year in America, thousands of young people under the age of 18 experience out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, and rough one-third of them will survive, but programs like Project ADAM save lives. Since its inception, Project ADAM North Carolina has trained numerous schools, youth centers and programs, and even youth equestrian stables in cardiac emergency preparedness, certifying all these sites as NC Heart Safe. There is no legal requirement for schools in North Carolina to have AEDs or cardiac action plans. Project ADAM North Carolina, which is managed through the Duke Children's Pediatric and Congenital Heart Center, will train any willing site or program in cardiac safety, ensuring life-saving support for children who experience sudden cardiac arrest.

Kids Care Grants, such as the one which helped launch Project ADAM North Carolina, are small grants to support patient needs and community health and are supported by Children's Miracle Network Hospitals fundraising across central and southeastern North Carolina. 

A group of people and two horses stand at an equestrian farm; they all wear masks and two hold a sign that reads "Project ADAM Heart Safe Site."

Going through surgeries, hospital stays, heart caths, and countless appointments at Duke, has not been without agony. But it has been the people at Duke Children’s, especially Duke Pediatric and Congenital Heart Center, that have offered and continue to offer honesty, hope, and healing so George, and we, may thrive. Out of our deepest gratitude and admiration for all that this program and team means to our family, and thousands more families like ours, we, with your help, hope to play a small part in raising money for  scientific research around congenital heart disease.

George and Molly Brummett Wudel, Duke Children's Patient Parents and Stronger Together Fundraisers

Community Impact: Stronger Together for Duke Children’s 

When COVID-19 changed our lives, Duke Children’s lost critical sources of fundraising. In fall 2020, we launched Stronger Together, an online fundraising platform where supporters could continue to support Duke Children’s through birthday celebrations, personal stories, and virtual events. As we look beyond the pandemic, our community can continue to fundraise through Stronger Together for Duke Children’s!

A graph showing dollars raised for Duke Children's

An Impact Story: At the Heart of Research and Medicine

21-year-old Josie Dunnigan was facing yet another heart surgery, but her care team was armed with an incredible new tool: a 3D printed model of her heart, created through a unique collaboration between Duke Children's and the Duke University Innovation Co-Lab. This collaboration allows the Duke Children's heart team to study their patients' hearts in less-invasive ways, enabling them to create the best care and surgical plans for long-term success.

Read more about how surgeons use 3D printed models to plan complex heart surgeries at Duke Children's. 

A young adult patient is shown a 3D-printed model of her heart by her physician

“The 3D printing program we have here at Duke is really remarkable. It highlights the strengths we have by being a medical center physically co-located with the larger university and the strengths that those two pieces can bring together when they work together.”


Dr. Piers Barker
Pediatric Cardiologist

Cumulative Impact: Your Gift Matters

Every dollar donated to Duke Children’s makes a difference in the life of a child. The school bake sale, the round up at the grocery store register, the sustaining monthly gifts, the six-figure estate planning gift -- all of these contribute to our work every day. Small gifts add up to make an enormous impact.


A graph showing cumulative impact of gifts for Duke Children's.

An Impact Story: Welcome Simulator Baby Paul!

Baby Paul joined the team in 2020 thanks to a gift from a donor. The advanced patient simulator is specifically constructed to train a multidisciplinary neonatology team in the care of pre-term babies.

“Baby Paul has helped us take our simulation and mock resuscitation program to the next level," says Laura Miller, MD, who just finished her third year as a neonatal-perinatal medicine fellow at Duke Children'. "Compared with our older manikins, Baby Paul is incredibly realistic, from his breathing patterns and cry to his 3D printed airway. Having a more realistic and high-tech manikin has allowed us to make life-or-death resuscitation scenarios and practices look and feel just like the real thing. With Paul, we can better evaluate and give feedback on critical aspects of the resuscitation, such as intubation, because his features include tiny sensors in his airway and a computer display that shows whether the breathing tube is in the correct position. Now that we are more familiar with Paul and all his functions, we plan to record our scenarios using his computer system and a video camera. This will help us to systemically review the resuscitation with the team afterward and provide feedback on the timing of interventions, communication, and teamwork. We believe that this method of reviewing mock resuscitations will ultimately translate to improved team performance during real-life resuscitations, helping us save the lives of the tiniest and most fragile babies.” 

A group of providers in training with simulator baby Paul

Baby Paul has helped us take our simulation and mock resuscitation program to the next level!  We believe that this method of reviewing mock resuscitations will ultimately translate to improved team performance during real-life resuscitations, helping us save the lives of the tiniest and most fragile babies.

Laura Miller, MD

Future impact: Tomorrow's Breakthroughs

Unrestricted funds support the areas of greatest need at Duke Children's, including research toward tomorrow's pediatric clinical care and treatments. Startup research projects supported in 2020 included: 

  • Kaveh Ardalon, MD, MS: Understanding the impact of chronic disease on mental health.

  • Jennifer Cohen, MD: Investigating new treatments for glycogen storage diseases.

  • Matt Kelly, MD: Understanding how the lung microbiome protects individuals from developing pneumonia.

  • Andrew Landstrom, MD, PhD: Working to identify the genetic causes of sudden death in infants and children.

  • Michelle White, MD:  Working to understand issues related to how neighborhoods impact healthy lifestyles and to implement strategies to mitigate issues that are identified. 

  • Charles Wood, MD:  Researching new interventions to prevent childhood obesity.


A graph showing Duke Children's giving
Thank you!

Thank you for supporting clinical care, pediatric research, and provider education at Duke Children's! Your gift doesn't just help our patients, research conducted here can help children all over the world. You are helping us care for our most precious resource, our children, and are helping us build a strong and healthy future for children everywhere. We are so grateful. 


We appreciate gifts of any size, making sure that your generosity is used to advance medical care and provide a better tomorrow for our children. You can choose a dollar amount to give now, or continue exploring more ways that you can support Duke Children’s.