Year Two. Everyone knows year one after a loved one’s passing is going to be heartbreaking and excruciatingly difficult. And yes, it does get easier. Not easier because you miss them less, but easier because you have learned how to get up and keep going while you miss them. Easier because you’ve found new ways to honor their memory. Easier because, well, you just have to be gentle with yourself.
Year Two is about settling into your new normal. And, if you’re lucky, learning how to keep your loved one’s dream alive and their impact felt.
And, Claire’s Place has been truly fortunate to have all of you working with us to keep Claire’s legacy alive. Keeping her magical impact present and growing. What a year we have all created together.
In Year One – We raised $572,069 dollars and assisted over 150 families and 100 individuals living with cystic fibrosis.
In Year Two – We raised $430,558 dollars and have been able to assist over 100 families and 100 individuals living with cystic fibrosis.
Since Claire passed in 2018, we have raised more money and helped more families than all the previous years combined.
Our numbers and our impact are still going strong!
We know Claire would have rolled up her sleeves and gotten busy making a difference for CF families facing the harsh financial realities wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic. Under Melissa’s guidance, we formed a new program, The Covid Support Fund, to assist families with CF with basic necessities and grocery money due to loss of work. Thanks to the amazing outpouring of love from all of you, we have raised almost $59,000 and assisted over 300 individuals with this program alone.
CF families are faced with harsh financial choices when caring for a loved one in the hospital. Our Extended Hospital Stay Program, our first program, has been able to help over 150 families this past year. Giving, at least, financial peace of mind to families so they could sit by their child’s bedside in the hospital for weeks on end. And, hopefully, those donations let those CFers and their families know: they were not alone, we were all sitting there in spirit with them.
We have been listening to you. And, we know, as wonderful as the Extended Hospital Stay Program is at helping CF families in need, some folks need a longer term solution; a way to earn a living while they are in the hospital, or caring for a loved one with CF, or managing and balancing their CF with their work lives. This year, we are so excited to roll out the Work Proudly Program with the help of an Impact Grant from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. In 2020, we will be helping 15 people, who either have CF or are CF caregivers, learn a trade that can be done from anywhere. People want to work, they want to be empowered, they just need the right training so they can learn how to manage their jobs from home, or the hospital, or from wherever this wild CF ride takes them.
And sprinkling some magic dust in the hospital, was right up Claire’s alley. With many thanks to our friend and sponsor, Zappos for Good, we have rolled out our second Hospital Playroom to put a little corner of sunshine in hospitals for children and their families. The Miller Children’s and Women’s Hospital Playroom had to forego it’s grand opening due to COVID-19 safety concerns but it’s ready when the world is!
Claire had wanted the foundation to get a new logo for well, for a very long time! And she’d begun working on it before she passed. We were proud to have our little logo grow up and, big secret, the new website that Claire had always wanted is in the works too, we hope to roll it out in 2021 in honor of our 10 year anniversary. Stay tuned!
Our first Clairity Ball in June of 2019, was such a wonderful success thanks to you and to our generous sponsors Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Zappos for Good, International Biophysics Corporation and YouTube Originals. Unfortunately, our plans for this year’s Gala and the always fun Glow Ride are on hold until we can all be together safely. We’re truly missing all of you. Stay in touch with us on Instagram and Facebook. We’re here, we’re still working for the community, we’re just hunkered down.
And while you’re hunkered down…. Why not watch the amazing YouTube Originals documentary “Claire” by academy award winning director Nick Reed and Ryan Azevedo. Talk about keeping Claire’s message growing, the documentary, which was released just one year ago, has now touched over ten million people with views across Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.
We did it! Thanks to YOU! We survived. And, we’re hoping Claire would think we’ve thrived. Looking forward to what we can all continue to create in the years to come.
Grateful always for all of you and for the opportunity to keep Claire’s legacy alive,
Laura McHolm, Chairman of the Board