top of page
Screen Shot 2020-09-20 at 3.44.24 PM.png

Join us

Please be a part of our new

"Rusty Says" TV Campaign!

Beginning in 1944, there was "Smokey the Bear". 

In the 1980's, there was "McGruff the Crime Dog".


Now, in 2024, there is "Rusty Says"!

Kids & Guns

Kids & Bullying PSA

About the "Rusty Says" Campaign

Across the country everyday, we read how violence is on the rise,

and it is having a negative impact on our kids.

Produced by Hang On to the Dream Foundation, our Emmy Award winning 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, the "Rusty Says" campaign is series of Public Service Announcements hosted by our beloved mascot "Rusty", who speaks directly to kids about important topics that effect them, like guns, bullying and much, much more. 

Your tax deductible donation to the "Rusty Says" campaign will help us purchase airtime on television stations across the country in an effort to reach kids and help make a difference in their lives through these very important video messages. 

Please take a moment and view these wonderful new videos above,

and then please join us in this campaign by making a donation using the form below. 

Thank you in advance for being a part of this very important campaign! 

HOTTDF alt trans logo 1.png

Be a part of our "Dream Team"! 

As a contributor to the "Hang On to the Dream Foundation", 
you will be making a difference in the lives of young people from around the country by helping them reach their goals in life.


Screen Shot 2020-09-20 at 3.45.30 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-09-20 at 3.44.24 PM.png


"Hang On To The Dream" began as an Emmy Award winning TV show.

Today, the Hang On to the Dream Foundation is a national, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, committed to helping kids realize their dreams by supplying them with

needed items, opportunities and/or financial assistance.

Below are just some of the incredible recipients of 

"The Hang On to the Dream Foundation": 

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 5.39.47 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 2.30.24 PM.png

As an infant, Josh Pobursky had both legs amputated and his parents were told that he would never be able to walk. 

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 5.40.15 PM.png

But Josh grew up to prove doctors wrong by becoming a

top little league hockey player.


The Hang On to the Dream Foundation gave Josh a HUGE surprise and flew the talented 15 year old and his family to Quebec so that Josh could meet his hero, NHL legend Patrick Roy!

Watch the moment Josh was surprised above!

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 2.29.56 PM.png

Stephanie Orton of Council Bluffs, Iowa was just 7 years old when she was hospitalized with 2nd and 3rd degree burns suffered while in the care of her drug addicted parents.  The court got involved and her parents eventually lost custody of Stephanie due to their constant drug abuse. 


After 9 months in foster care, Stephanie was adopted by her maternal grandmother who enrolled her in ice skating lessons in an effort to help take her mind off of all that she had been through. 

Stephanie began to excel greatly in skating, however the finances needed to continue skating became hard for her grandmother to afford.  One day, they heard about a "Hang On To The Dream" sponsorship event that was being held in Omaha, Nebraska and decided to make the drive in hopes of getting sponsored.  With videotape in hand, Stephanie showed her outstanding skating abilities and Christopher knew right away that his organization had to help. 

A few weeks later, Stephanie was surprised when a chauffeur driven limousine came to her grandmother's apartment to drive them to Council Bluffs City Hall where former Council Bluffs Mayor Tom Hanafan presented Stephanie with

"The Key to the City" (becoming the youngest person in Council Bluffs history to receive the key). Then Christopher surprised Stephanie and her grandmother by informing them that his organization found a sponsor to cover her skating lessons!  

See the very emotional surprise above!

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 2.31.54 PM.png

(Photo from left: Stephanie's grandmother, Sharon; foundation president Christopher Ewing;
Stephanie; former Council Bluffs Mayor Mayor Tom Hanafan)

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 2.27.22 PM.png

A severe birth defect caused Sable Carfield of McCook, Nebraska to be born with no right arm and only a partial left arm.  But she did not allow the lack of arms prevent her from reaching for her dream of becoming a certified lifeguard! 

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 2.27.44 PM.png

Christopher heard about Sable's story and discovered that what she was desperately in need of was a voice-activated laptop computer so that she could do her school work more easily. 


Watch the video when Sable was surprised during

a "Hang On to the Dream" tour event! 

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 5.45.51 PM.png

Growing up, Vanessa was surrounded by numerous negative influences from within her community.  By the 8th grade, she was already experimenting with drugs and doing poorly in school, until someone close to her died from a drug overdose.  Vanessa knew then that she had to make a change in her life. 


Instead of drugs, Vanessa used dance as a way to escape. 
Defying the odds,  Vanessa has "hung on" to her dream and turned her life around!  Through studying hard, she earned a 4.0 grade point average, and became the first person in her family to ever graduate high school. 


After hearing about Vanessa and how hard she worked to turn her life around, Christopher flew to Denver to make one of her biggest dreams come true!

Watch the surprise of a lifetime below!

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 2.29.17 PM.png

"It was vicious... there were broken instruments all over the place.  It was just terrible,

was how one of the faculty members at The Detroit H.S. for the Fine and Performing Arts described the scene when students came to school one morning to find that their band room was hit by vandals who destroyed almost every instrument in the room.

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 2.30.24 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-09-20 at 3.45.11 PM.png

The Hang On to the Dream Foundation, ​in conjunction with Yamaha of America, gave the school nearly $5,000 in new instruments, and the students couldn't wait to put on a show with their new drums!


Watch footage from the surprising moment, and the impromptu performance, above!

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 2.32.55 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 2.32.26 PM.png

11 year old piano prodigy Emma Schneider of Arden Hills, Minnesota planned to just run into the Mall Of America to buy a pair of shoes, but saw that the Hang On to the Dream Foundation was holding a music competition where the winner got to record their own CD and more,

so she decided to try out. 


And she blew the judges away!

Watch the story on Emma below, who got to record her very own CD at the same studio where such singers as Sting, Sarah McLachlan and many others record!    

These are just some of the awesome kids we have helped,

but we can't fulfill dreams like these without people like you!

Become a part of our "Dream Team"! 


As a contributor to the "Hang On to the Dream Foundation", 
you will be making a difference in the lives of young people from around the country by helping them reach their goals in life.

Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 5.52.33 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-09-21 at 5.52.41 PM.png

And as a token of our appreciation, for any donation of $30 or more,
we will send you a "Hang On to the Dream" tee shirt or coffee mug,
just as our way of saying "Thanks"!

Screen Shot 2020-09-20 at 3.49.02 PM.png

Contributions from people like you

are what makes all of this possible!

Thank you very much for helping us help kids to "Hang On to the Dream"!
Your tax-deductible donation is greatly appreciated!

Thank you in advance for your donation!

To make your donation, please complete the info below:

"I would like to make this donation..."

Please select a choice below:
bottom of page