Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Parra family shares their story

            Leslie Parra is a brave and strong 11 year old whose family has intermittently stayed at Family House since earlier this year. Leslie was first treated at UC Davis Medical Center after experiencing an aneurysm at the age of 4. In March of 2011, the Parra Family was referred to seek further treatment at UCSF Children’s Hospital based on the difficulties of diagnosing her condition. Leslie has gone through 5 brain surgeries in the past 4 years and doctors are just now beginning to get a better sense of her condition. Several kinds of brain tumors have been thought to be the culprit, but doctors are still not confident to make a concrete diagnosis. The Parra family has most recently been staying at our 10th Ave. House during Leslie’s radiation treatments and follow-ups. Thankfully, her scans are looking good and the radiation she has been receiving for the past two months seems to be helping a lot.
No matter what heath concerns a family is faced with, stress and the difficulties of an uncertain diagnosis are bound to affect the daily lives of the patient and their family. For Leslie and her parents, Family House is a place that helps lessen these stresses and troubles. Cathy and Macario, Leslie’s parents, are very grateful for their home away from home during Leslie’s visits to UCSF. Family House is not just a convenient place for the Parra family to stay while in San Francisco, but they also appreciate the encouragement and support that the other families staying in the house so willingly give.
Cathy also appreciates that Family House “provides everything” to covor their basic needs. She even feels as though she doesn’t want to go home to Salinas when she is here! When comparing similar organizations that the Parras have stayed with to Family House, Cathy feels as though there is no better place for her family. When asked about her favorite part of Family House, Cathy spoke fondly of the staff and said that they are all extremely sensitive to each family’s situation, and that they have the right heart for this kind of work. All staff members, Cathy says, are “there for you” and have great attitudes. In addition to the staff, Leslie would have to say that her favorite part of the house is the living room area and TVs :).

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