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Project Smile Sends More Than 2,300 Uplifting Cards To Phoenix-Area Hospitals

As the COVID-19 pandemic drags on, many patients are recovering without loved ones by their side. But two brothers from Peoria are still trying to put a smile on their faces.

Even before the pandemic hit, the Chadha family was no stranger to immunocompromised patients. 

Twelve-year-old Pravneet Chadha says when hospitals began filling up, their parents and other health care workers started receiving thank-you cards.

“Our mom is an oncologist and our dad is a G.I. doctor,” Pravneet said. “We wanted to help the patients as well, so that’s where we started.”

They launched Project Smile by sending uplifting greeting cards to hospitals all over the Valley. Fifteen-year-old Hurshneet Chadha says the reaction has been overwhelming. 

“We’ve gotten an extremely positive response from our community on social media,” Hurshneet said. “We even got the Banner CEO to give us a response. She said that we’ve made a very positive impact on the atmosphere of their hospital.”

The Chadha brothers have also started providing Project Smile kits to places like the Child Crisis Center of Arizona, so other kids can make their own cards to send out. They’ve delivered more than 2,300 cards since the project started in April. 

“We actually felt very useless in a way, before we started this project,” Hurshneet said. “We felt like we couldn’t do anything to help the patients. Now, we feel like we’re doing our part.”

They’re also hosting a holiday card drive in hopes of reaching 3,000 by the end of the year. For more information, or to make a donation, visit their website.

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Senior field correspondent Bridget Dowd has a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.