The Children’s Hospital of Georgia received a check for $1 million on May 2, part of a promised $5.3 million donation from a foundation created by pro golfer Kevin Kisner and his wife, Brittany.
The donation will help expand the pediatric behavioral health and wellness center at CHOG. It will help each child’s testing and evaluation for psychotherapy, counseling and other mental health services.
“It gives us a chance to really begin a program that is desperately needed. And that’s pediatric behavioral health and well-being and mental health,” said Dr. Brooks Keel, president of Augusta University. “We know that it is especially impacting young people. So, to have the chance to build a whole program here that is going to be dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of behavioral mental health in pediatric patients will give us a chance to impact an individual.
Brittany Kisner said, once established, the center will be called the Kisner Foundation and Friends Center. She said the idea came out of meetings they had with Augusta University.
“They said pediatric behavioral health and wellness was the need. We did not have any of these services, enough services and pediatricians like Dr. Hartman and Dr. Hudson saw that as a big void for this hospital, but also for this entire area,” she said. “When we spoke to pediatricians in the community, they could not echo that need more; they needed places to refer to many kids in our area need more comprehensive treatment and more help.”
Kevin Kisner was born and raised in Aiken and is a graduate of the University of Georgia. The couple make their home in Aiken County with their three children.
“What I really love is that our kids are into it. Our kids want to help raise money, and we’re teaching them at a young age that giving back is a great, great part of life,” he said.
The Kisner Foundation began in 2015. In addition to this project with the children’s hospital, the couple are involved with The First Tee of Aiken. They also have the Tee Up to Read program. It works with Ferst Readers of Aiken County to provide an age-appropriate book every month to a child until their fifth birthday.
“That’s how both sets of our parents raised us. And, you know, we start small, and that’s kind of how we did when we were younger. And then once Kevin reached a certain platform and golf, we felt like we could do more. We just felt like it was our duty to do so. So that’s how we’re trying to raise our children as well,” Brittany Kisner said.
For more information about the Kisner Foundation and its projects go to: www.kiznerfoundation.com