Kim Kardashian West started to work with the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles seven years ago, after a friend’s child got sick. She not only donates proceeds from her eBay auction store to the nonprofit, but she also carves out time to regularly visit patients and their parents, especially during the holidays.
“My father passed away from cancer,” says Kardashian West, who lost her dad, Robert, in 2003. “I remember what it was like when my dad was going through it. You see the kids that are so strong. They feel so helpless. You want to do anything to help them.”
Children’s Hospital L.A. offers care to 107,000 children annually from around the world. Doctors are trained in 350 specialties in the medical field. DeAnn Marshall, a senior vice president, says that Kardashian West’s visits are meaningful to the children and staff. “Her involvement has always been laser-focused,” Marshall says. “Her positive spirit and genuine concern for their situations has lifted up many families during unimaginable times.”
On some of these visits, Kardashian West will sit at the patient’s bedside alone. Other times, she’ll bring along her husband, Kanye West, or her sisters. She’ll arrive at the hospital armed with presents such as iTunes gift cards or beauty products. “We’ll sit and paint our nails together,” Kardashian West says.
The kids, who are excited to see the E! reality star, will ask that she post their selfies on Instagram, where Kardashian West has 30.1 million followers. “They love to see their pictures on social media,” she says.
Kardashian West says that she’s even more inspired to help these kids since she became a mom in 2013 to daughter North West. “You realize how hard it must be to be a parent to a child with an illness,” says Kardashian West, who donated all her baby shower gifts to a hospital in Chicago, where her husband grew up. “Your whole perspective changes.”