Cher in the City: Hear stories of helping, healing on radiothon

I have finally gotten into the Christmas spirit.


No, it wasn’t the decorations and the Christmas music, the excitement of shopping and the Christmas party invitations that remind me that it’s almost here.

This year it was something altogether different. This year I was reminded by a little girl named Alexis Smith.

Last year, for the first time, my station, 96.3 Kiss FM, in partnership with 104.3 WBBQ, participated in the Kiss Cares for Kids Radiothon. For those of you who may not be familiar with the radiothon, it is Georgia Health Science University’s largest fund-raiser. The funds raised by the radiothon make it possible for Medical College of Georgia Children’s Medical Center to provide quality care to children and families in a patient- and family-centered environment. All of the money raised here stays here to benefit children in this community.

As we prepared to get ready for this year’s radiothon, I ran across the interview I did with Alexis.

I remember when I met Alexis. She was 7 years old and seemed so tiny to me, but she had the biggest, most beautiful brown eyes I’d ever seen – and a smile to match them. Alexis, who was diagnosed with Lupus, was on dialysis and needed a kidney transplant.

At that time, Alexis said she wanted to be a doctor or a veterinarian because she wanted to help people. She went on to say that she had been through surgery and had to take lots of medication. She said that sometimes it hurt, but not for very long. During one part of the interview, I asked Alexis how she dealt with the pain. She replied, “I pray a lot with my minister and my mom.”

I was happy to hear that Alexis had gotten her kidney and that she was doing well. I was even more excited that she would be back at the radiothon again this year, but this time to tell us how her life was better because of her new kidney.

Last year, the Kiss Cares for Kids Radiothon raised more than $200,000. The efforts of all those who donated – whether it was time or money – made it possible for Alexis and children like her to receive the kind of care that saves lives.

The holiday season is really all about the spirit of giving, but I must say nothing puts you more in the spirit of Christmas like being a part of saving the lives of children.

Grab a little holiday spirit and join us for the 11th annual Cares for Kids Radiothon, which will be held Dec. 8-10 with radio stations 96.3 KISS FM and WBBQ-FM (104.3). Donations can be made at or

Anyone who wishes to volunteer or get more information may call Catherine Stewart, Children’s Miracle Network development coordinator, at (706) 721-4004 or send e-mail to