We had the good fortune of connecting with Brian Burkhardt & Trisha Brookbank and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Brian Burkhardt & Trisha Brookbank, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
In May 2020, our oldest son Oliver (9) was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia – A.L.L. and we were thrown for a loop.

We went through a roller coaster of emotions, from denial to despair, and everything in between. We quickly realized that Oliver and his younger brother, Peter (4), needed us to be brave, strong, and face things head on! We decided right then and there to turn things around with the power of positivity.
So this memorial day.. exactly one year since Oliver’s diagnosis we are launching the Oliver Patch Project.

The Oliver Patch Project (OPP) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation whose mission is to create a fun, engaging platform where children with childhood cancers and their families can connect through a series of unique patches created by artists and designers just for them.

We empower kids to find their inner warriors, as they endure life changing milestone events, by providing a bit of sunshine throughout their entire cancer journey from discovery through completion.

What should our readers know about your business?
I think the best way is to tell you our story of how the Oliver Patch Project came to be…

Backstory

In May 2020, our oldest son Oliver (9) was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia – A.L.L. To say our family was thrown for a loop…is an understatement!

For families like ours on a cancer journey, you know what it’s like to go through a roller coaster of emotions, from denial to despair, and everything in between. We quickly realized that Oliver and his younger brother, Peter (4), needed us to be brave, strong, and face things head on! We decided right then and there to turn things around with the power of positivity.
When Oliver was diagnosed with cancer, we were flooded with communication from friends and family members asking, “What can we do?” Thank god we’re blessed to have a fantastic support system. We received so much wonderful food (our freezer was full!), gifts, cards and messages of love.

We wanted to keep the momentum of love and support going throughout his treatment, so we made the simple ask of, “send a patch”.
Lots and lots of patches!

Oliver is a collector of everything! As designers and lifelong creators at heart, we wondered if there was a way to combine it all, to support Oliver on his journey.

We had the idea for friends and family to collect and send Oliver patches we could sew on his jean jacket that he could wear like a Warrior to and from hospital visits. The jacket served almost like a suit of armor which made him feel strong and loved while fighting his battle. Before we knew it, we reached 2,000 patches, and they kept coming! Oliver was literally bombarded by love and looked forward to walking to the mailbox daily with huge smiles.

We soon asked ourselves, “how can we share this love with other kids like Oliver?” And the Oliver Patch Project was born!

Designers that Rock!
We have asked artists around the world to contribute patch designs. The outpouring of art and love for the Oliver Patch Project has been outstanding! Every image and video you experience on this site comes from the creative minds of people that care. These designs are not available anywhere else.

They are made just for our Warriors! If that’s not cool, I don’t know what is.
Knowledge is Power!
The Oliver Patch Project is creating community. We lift kids and families up to feel their strength and celebrate their important medical milestones.

Our goal is to make kids and families feel calm and confident in times of crisis. Using bright, colorful, uplifting animations, graphics, and videos we help kids feel their power!
Team OPP

Founded by Brian, Trisha, Oliver, and Peter. Our family currently lives in Miami, Florida. Oliver loves video games and is an awesome artist. Peter is all about staying active on his scooter or jumping on the trampoline.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Well now that pretty much everything we do includes kids… we are super close family and we spend a lot of time together with Mema, Grandpa and the uncles. In Miami we love going to the “Pinecrest Gardens and Farmers market”, walking around South Miami, eating pizza at “Spris”, ice cream from “Whip and Dip” and getting iced Chai from “Tea and poets”. We go to Islamorada as much as we can (Mema and Grandpa have a house) and this is our favorite place to go for a long weekend.. or longer.. lol. Our favorite places to eat is at “Bad Boy Burrito” and we love to visit “The History of Diving Museum” and “Theatre of the Sea”.

lol….(i know really interesting) fyi.. pre kids this list would be very different… lol

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
We would like to thanks everyone that has taken the time to send love, prayers and positive energy our way. When you find out your child has cancer it is hard to not get overwhelmed. The power of positivity and outpouring of love is what made us strong. Our team of supporters are what made this possible and for that we are eternally grateful.

Website: https://www.oliverpatchproject.org

Instagram: @oliverpatchproject

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/oliverpatchproject

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgromn05XGOI8xTW3ns7Vfw

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