Paying It Forward


David and Joanne Sawczuk’s son, Ben, received life-changing rehabilitation at Kennedy Krieger’s Pediatric Brain Injury Program after a serious accident at age 8. Ben had to relearn everything—walking, talking, breathing, and swallowing—but seven years later, he’s doing great.

When David told Ben’s story to fellow members of the Northern Virginia Security Forum (NoVSF), a group of security professionals throughout the DC Metro area, the group decided to host the first NoVSF Charity Golf Tournament to raise funds for Kennedy Krieger. The event raised an astonishing $80,000 for the Institute’s Brain Injury Rehabilitation Programs, as well as much needed equipment for patients.

“Going through that experience and having people do as much for your child, and then your family… You feel this incredible—it’s not debt, its gratitude and wanting to say ‘thanks,’” explained David in a recent interview with WJLA-TV.

“The Sawczuk family and their community at the Northern Virginia Security Forum are truly inspirational,” said Dr. Stacy Suskauer, Director of Brain Injury Rehabilitation Programs at Kennedy Krieger Institute. “They have not only rallied around Ben but now have joined together to help other children and families as well. These funds will have a tremendous impact.”

For his part, Ben couldn’t be prouder. “It feels amazing to give back to something that gave so much to me.”

Click here to view a photo gallery of the event.