First Lady Melania Trump was in Bethesda on Wednesday afternoon to visit kids staying with their families at The Children’s Inn at the National Institutes of Health.
Trump decorated cookies and made Valentine’s Day cards with the children, many of whom are participating in clinical trials at the Rockville Pike medical center for rare diseases.
“Having the First Lady of the United States visit our children is a tremendous honor, and she was just lovely to be around and wonderful with the children,” Jennie Lucca, CEO of The Children’s Inn said in a statement. “The Children’s Inn’s goal is to make childhood possible despite illness and give children who stay with us while they participate in clinical trials the chance to play, laugh and just be children.”
Lucca said Trump’s presence made the kids “beam with excitement and pride” and they enjoyed the opportunity to spend part of Valentine’s Day with her.
“There are not many people who can say they received a Valentine from the First Lady—it’s a memory our children and families will treasure forever,” Lucca said.
“It was fun making cookies and meeting and talking to the First Lady,” Amber Negrete, 8, of California said in a statement about meeting Trump. Negrete is being treated for a rare genetic disorder that affects nerve functioning in a similar way as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS. “I was excited because she said to me, ‘You’re gorgeous,’ and I asked her how it feels to be First Lady and she said, ‘good.’ ”
Trump also received a tour of the inn from NIH Director Francis Collins.
Valentine's Day cookie decorating and card exchanging with @FLOTUS and the amazing children at @TheChildrensInn at @NIH. She brought each of the children White House valentines. "I will treasure all of this," she said. pic.twitter.com/WQjlaHFnWx
— Betsy Klein (@betsy_klein) February 14, 2018
At the end of her visit, the children presented Trump with gifts that included a finger-painted paper heart, a First Lady of The United States apron with The Children’s Inn logo and Valentine’s Day T-shirts for the first family.
Before arriving at the Inn, Trump tweeted she was “looking forward to a very sweet afternoon” visiting the children.
First Lady Melania Trump visited children at The Children's Inn on Wednesday. Credit: NIH
NIH Director Francis Collins, in the front, gave Melania Trump a tour of The Children's Inn when she visited Wednesday. Credit: NIH