Thank you ALL so much for helping us reach 66,945 views in ONE MONTH with our fundraiser with The Jubilee Project! We are so humbled to have your love and support!

Lynna Nguyen Photography

Happy Summer from Red Balloon!

This week, we have an exciting press release to announce with all of you! In the midst of all the excitement, Lynna Nguyen graciously did our summer photoshoot in time for the press release. Lynna is a young Bay Area photographer but don’t let her age fool you; she’s one of the most talented photographers we’ve worked with and has an innate gift for natural lighting to make the ordinary seem extraordinary. Her photos were a gift to Red Balloon so we are so thankful for her and will hopefully have her join our media team soon!

For more information, please visit http://www.lynnanguyen.com


We’re back and refreshed from our six month absence! Thank you to all of our supporters for being so amazing and encouraging and we embark on our newest adventure. A couple things to look forward to:

The Aaden Project,
a branch project off of Red Balloon to increase minority representation in the national bone marrow registry. This is a partner project with The Asian American Donor Program and The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship

George Mark’s Children House,
the nation’s first pediatric palliative care located in San Leandro, CA. We’ve been in contact for a potential collaboration as they are developing their own music therapy programs for their patients

New Red Balloons benefits and clubs
across the nation including Wisconsin, New York, Texas and California

2011 Benefit Show
might find a new home in the Bay Area! Details will soon be revealed!

It’s a very big year for us. Although it’s different from what we had envisioned, we’re doing our best to be flexible and leaving behind a positive impact on the lives of children across the nation. Thank you all again for your love and support!

Any questions, booking inquiries (INTERESTED IN PERFORMING?), media or comments, please email us at redballoon.staff(at)gmail(dot)com

Red Balloons on my shirt!!!

Thanks to The Imaginary Zebra, we have an exclusive t-shirt for the event! Benson Chou’s creativity really shines through this design and every aspect of detail has a significance. We are so happy with the finished product and so honored to have Imaginary Zebra be apart of our benefit this year.

They will also be showcasing their apparel at our benefit so please come out and support them and the UC Davis Popping Club.

Please visit http://theimaginaryzebra.blogspot.com/ to see other wonderful creations of the Imaginary Zebra. Pictures are from their website.

Shirts are $20 with 50% of your purchase going to the UC Davis Children’s Hospital!

To preorder your shirt: http://theimaginaryzebra.bigcartel.com/product/red-balloon-x-the-imaginary-zebra-pre-order

You can pick up your order at the show OR have the shirt shipped to you!

Don’t forget to RSVP your tickets at redballoon.staff@gmail.com or donate online at http://projectredballoon.chipin.com

We are so excited to see you all this weekend!!! Stay tuned for more updates and news. We promise it keeps getting better and better!

Red Balloon, party with a purpose

Thank you Vivanista for featuring us on your website!!!

Please visit http://vivanista.com to learn about other local non-profit organizations and learn how you be successful at your own! They are a fantastic group and offer great advice to help any person get started.

Vivanista is also having a video contest with Red Balloon in the running!

This video submission has been my personal dream for years. I decided it’s finally time to make this dream a reality. We’ll be saying goodbye to you at our November show, but saying hello to over 1000 pediatric patients in local children’s hospitals throughout Northen California. This is truly what I wanted Red Balloon to become.”
— Jennifer Allison Tran, Founder and Executive Director

Once when I was little,

I believed that I could fly to the moon Tuesday morning and be back by noon; I believed that I would find a cure for cancer in my spare time and marry Justin Timberlake; I believed that the world could only get better.

My second day in the ER, I witnessed my first pediatric trauma and time of death. 3yo, 911 trauma, peds vs. auto. He had on a pair of Shrek velcro shoes. I was devastated. I spent an hour crying in the stairwell because I felt so helpless. I thought medicine was a misguided ambition; I thought I wasn’t meant to be a doctor. Ironically, this incident solidified my childhood dreams. But needless to say, I avoided peds ER like the plague.

In June 2009, my PI (principal investigator, she’s my boss when I did clinical research in peds) paged me and told me they were expecting an “exciting case” and I should go down to the ER to check it out. Working in an academic hospital has its perks; I knew her idea of “exciting” meant chief complaint/injuries with academic potential. I stopped by the emrap office to check the medical records to have an idea of this “exciting case.”

My heart sank; 4yo, 911 trauma, peds vs. auto, struck by oncoming vehicle, airlift, induced coma, multiple brain injuries. Every phrase induced sharp pains into my chest. “Let’s check it out!!!” said the emraper on shift. Usually (if not all the time), I would’ve already beat ’em to Resus but today was different. Today reminded me of my 3yo with the Shrek shoes struck by a truck in a shopping mall parking lot. I told the emraper to go out instead and that I had some work I needed to do. I found myself crying in a familiar stairwell.

Fast forward to now.

I’d like to introduce you all to Aviana. She is a beautiful little girl, adopted by two loving parents. She loves Gary Allen and Butch Walker. She’s like any normal little girl you’d know. In June 2009, she was with her grandparents walking along the sidewalk. Her grandpa held her as her grandma was a few steps behind. The two were struck by an oncoming car while her grandma watched in complete horror. Her grandpa presented with a pelvis fx, multiple rib fx, multiple contusions, cuts and scraps. Ariana was thrown out of his arms and landed on her head, suffering numerous skull fx and intracranial trauma. She needed immediate treatment and went into the OR at Sutter Roseville before airlifted to UC Davis Children’s Hospital.

You can connect the dots.

In a second, her life was completely broken and now her family is slowly (but surely) putting together all the pieces. Aviana’s injuries have left her unable to talk, walk or eat on her own; yet, her family makes the best out of everything and count their blessings that she is still alive.

By chance, I found her family’s blog and connected the dots. Their story hit close to home because I also remember that girl in the stairwell who cried for their little girl. When I was in that stairwell, I was completely helpless and passive. When I got in touch with her family, I cried but I was not in a stairwell. It’s different.

I’m happy to announce that this year’s Red Balloon will be dedicated to Aviana and her family. I believe that music goes beyond scalpels and sutures to make someone whole again. With a bit of magic, prayers and red balloons, maybe this one night of music can help with her recovery and brighten her family’s day. And who knows, maybe we’ll be able to change a child’s life. After all, the world can only get better.

All my love,

Jennifer Allison Tran

P.S. Visit and follow her family’s blog at http://avianareese.blogspot.com/

I know!

It’s embarrassing, I know! Four years into this project and I’ve taken advantage of everything from youtube to twitter. However, I’ve been so lazy and refused to learn html to build a website. Bear with us and we’ll have everything up and running in no time!