Friends rally around Hoffman girl and her family
Nicole's daddy calls his little girl Five Pennies because Five Pennies equal a nickel (Nicole).
For the second year, friends will host "A Cure for Five Pennies: Daddy's Little Girl," an attempt to raise funds to benefit Nicole Elsenbroek, daughter of Hoffman Estates residents Scott and Maria Elsenbroek, and the Pulmonary Hypertension Association.
Known to her first grade friends as Nikki, the little girl has a life-threatening disease called pulmonary hypertension, a little-known blood vessel disorder that so far has no cure.
It causes high blood pressure in the lungs so the 7-year-old, who has endured it for four years, uses an oxygen mask and takes costly medications.
The gala is a sit-down dinner with dancing and entertainment by Victor Pacini and Daniela Tereza, from 6-11 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 31 in Chandler's Chop House and Grille, 401 N. Roselle Road, Schaumburg.
Denise DeGuzman, one of the women who formed a thick friendship in the days when the moms waited to pick up their preschoolers at St. Hubert Catholic School, said the Elsenbroeks' friends want to lend a hand again.
"We want to help find a cure for Nikki and others afflicted with this disorder," DeGuzman said. "The group commits itself to raising funds until a cure can be found."
The $30 fundraiser includes a soup to dessert dinner starring Chicken Vesuvio. Children are welcome to attend too, and dine on hot dogs, fries, fruit and trips to the chocolate fountain. Their tickets cost $18.
A silent auction and a raffle - tickets are three for $5 - will help the funds roll in. There are tickets to Legoland and museums and attractions, as well as restaurant certificates and other surprises.
Last year's effort brought in $4,000, which encouraged the moms to do another one. DeGuzman and her co-chair Daniela Tereza are joined by Mary Austin, Julie Olsen, Suzanne Avila, Julie Bosshart, Kim Dobrincu, Kate Johnson and Maria Yonkus.
"We had so much fun that we agreed to continue our fundraising efforts until Nicole was free of symptoms," DeGuzman said.
The deadline for reservations is Wednesday, Jan. 21. Call DeGuzman at (847) 697-2934.