“Città della Speranza” was founded in 1994 in memory of Massimo, a boy who died of leukemia. For the name “Città della Speranza”, the founders Franco Masello, Virginio Zilio, Carlo Mazzocco and Professor Lugi Zanesco (at the time Director of the Pediatric Oncohematology Clinic of the Hospital of Padova) took inspiration from the American Foundation “City of Hope”, whose general management has been followed: this regards in particular the transparency, the credit administration, and the pragmatism.
The Foundation assumed the main objective of collecting funds to build a new and modern oncohematology pediatric department that would have taken the place of the old-fashioned division of the time, which resulted to be not sufficient or suitable to comfortably host the young patients and their families.
The leading idea was that the young patients could live their day-to-day life in a happy place, able to give good hope for their future. And so it was.
The proponents of this project were able to attract and involve industries and private citizens in the fundraising cause; Eng. Gaetano Meneghello and Arch. Giuseppe Clemente gave a fundamental contribution in the construction of the building; and finally, the new pediatric clinic was inaugurated in 1996
The new division was designed following the most modern criteria, which changed completely the quality of the cure and the support to the hospitalized young people, allowing doctors and healthcare assistants to carry out the medical treatment in the best possible way.
After the realisation of the pediatric clinic, the Foundation continued on his commitment: “Città della Speranza” supported the construction of the new Day Hospital and the Research Laboratories in 1998, and of the new Pediatric Emergency Room in 2003, always at the University-Hospital of Padova.
Then, the Foundation sponsored in Vicenza the Pediatric Day Hospital and the new Pediatric Emergency Room, inaugurated respectively in 2004 and 2010.
Finally, as the most recent endeavor, on the 8th of June 2012 the Institute of Pediatric Research (IRP) Città della Speranza was inaugurated in Padova: with 17.500 sm this is the largest research center on pediatric diseases of Europe.
Today, the Clinic of Pediatric Oncohematology is directed by Professor Giuseppe Basso, and is connected with the most important Italian and international centers working on pediatric oncohematology. It is the National Centre for the diagnosis of acute leukemia, and the molecular characterization of lymphoma and sarcoma. Moreover, the Clinic is the coordination centre of National and European protocols for the diagnosis and cure of lymphoma, sarcoma, cerebral, hepatic and rare tumors. Since 2014, the Clinic is the coordination Centre of the regional pediatric oncological net of the Veneto Region.
This has been made possible thanks to the fundraising activity of the Foundation Città della Speranza: the Foundation invests about 2 milion euros per year in Scientific Research, provided to IRP through the support of projects that are evaluated by an International Scientific Committee.