Thursday, August 29, 2019

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Go gold this September in support of kids battling childhood cancer! In the United States, more than 15,000 children will be diagnosed with cancer each year. The most complicated cases are referred to major children’s hospitals like the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital in San Francisco, which means that families are often far from home for extended periods of time while their child receives treatment.

Family House provides a home away from home for these families, and becomes a center of community and family for those who are away from their usual support networks. Every family has a clean, comfortable bedroom with a private bathroom, and shares a communal kitchen, living, and dining spaces. Staff and volunteers host breakfast every morning, and volunteer groups regularly host dinners for all Family House guests. We help fill hours outside of the hospital with fun activities like therapy dog visits, arts and crafts, music therapy, movie nights, and playtime on our 9,000 square foot courtyard.

Only those who have a critically-ill child can really understand what it’s like - there are stresses beyond stresses: doctor’s appointments, hospital stays, uncertainty about your child’s health and future; medical copays, travel expenses, lost wages; supporting siblings, and self-care. The families at Family House “get it,” and support each other through good times and bad. It’s one of the most important aspects of our mission - community care.

Every family stays for free at Family House for as long as they need; but it is not without cost. It costs Family House $150 per night for a family to stay with us; we are entirely supported through private donations from individuals, corporations, and foundations. Make a difference for a family going through the most difficult time of their lives: give a gift now.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Rockstar Volunteer:  Mari Goldstein

Mari Goldstein brings incredible energy to Family House each time she visits.  She leads weekly yoga classes for the families that stay at Family House and understands the importance of physical, mental, and spiritual exercise.  We are lucky to have Mari share  her knowledge and expertise with our families.

As a yoga volunteer, Mari teaches classes for all interested family members that would like to participate. She even welcomes our younger children that want to experience her classes.

Mari has been a part of Family House since April 2018 and continues to make an incredible contribution to the organization.  Whenever Mari is present, she warmly greets families, staff members, and visitors.  We want to thank Mari and show our appreciation for her talents and all she brings to Family House.

Thank you Mari!

Monday, August 12, 2019

Home Depot Volunteer Day at Family House

Wow! A huge thank you to The Home Depot Foundation and the 80+ (!!!) employees who undertook a major project volunteering at Family House! We’ve been in the Nancy & Stephen Grand Family House for 3 years, and this is the first significant “home improvement” project yet - and who better to do it than the experts from Home Depot? Volunteers repainted the baseboards and accent walls throughout our 92,000 square foot building - a project that took more than a day! While that was happening, other volunteers beautified the courtyard and spruced up the container gardens throughout, with lots of fresh new flowers and plants; and yet others worked on a “picture frames” painting project that will be unveiled later this year. While all this hard work was happening, even more volunteers were hosting a terrific experience for our families - interactive building projects and a great barbecue on the courtyard.

Congratulations to Scott Rustigan, winner of Home Depot’s Angel Award for exceptional service in the community! We know how all you’ve done for Mason and his family has made all the difference in the world, and we’re glad you’re part of the family. Thank you to Amy Hollingshead for connecting your Home Depot family with your Family House family! #teamdepot #homeawayfromhome #family

Click here to see more photos from this wonderful day of service, and click here to watch the video!

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Summer Carnival 2019

What a fun day! Thank you to everyone who made this year's Summer Carnival such a good time! Delicious homemade Mexican lunch from the team at GB Group and ice cream from Clover; entertainment by Boswick the Clown and magician The Amazing Caine; glitter tattoos by Anney Chan; Clo the Clover cow came to visit, as did Team Impact and service-dogs-in-training from Canine Companions for Independence; so many carnival games, prizes, and even stuffed animals made by the Hands On Bay Area teens in the HandsOnTomorrow program! Thank you to the incredible volunteers from Okta, the Family House Summer High School Volunteer program, The Madrone Residences & Madrone staff, with a special shout out to Gina Gorman - together, you brought so much joy and laughter to Family House families - we appreciate each of you!

Watch the fun video or see more photos on Facebook.