Berni, Romi, Lexi and Marni Barta
Walk into the backyard pool house at the Bartas’ family home in Los Angeles, and be prepared to step over piles of stored DVDs.
That’s because sisters Berni, Romi, Lexi and Marni Barta are the force behind Kid Flicks, a not-for-profit organization that collects and donates new and gently used kids’ DVDs to children’s hospitals and pediatric departments across the U.S. They started Kid Flicks when they were just kids themselves.
Movies can act as a balm to soothe scared or bored children who have undergone surgery, are fighting cancer and other diseases or are recuperating after an injury.
Before Kid Flicks became what it is today, it started as a simple idea that grew. In the spring on 2002, as the Bartas were doing their spring cleaning, they came across piles of childhood videos the girls no longer watched. But what should they do with them? The solution: donate the old movies to a pediatric oncology department at a local Los Angeles hospital.
Soon the girls started collecting other people’s children’s video castoffs to donate to more hospitals. They solicited friends, family, schools, churches, temples and other organizations. They even contacted movie studios and production companies and requested videos for the cause.
Movie donations started pouring in—and still do. As of April 2011, Kid Flicks has donated 58,300 movies to 583 different hospitals across the U.S.