Friday, December 23, 2005

Fisher House, Helping Military Families

When a loved one is ill or injured and requires special care the family is often burdened with extra costs associated with the care. These costs include lodging and meals when the care is not near their homes. This is especially true for our veterans. I was recently made aware that a friend, who comments here, had a family member who required surgery. The surgery took place in a state other than his residence so he and his family went to where the surgery was being performed. I was sent an email updating me and I am happy to say that, with God's blessing, all appears to be going well.

I was also made aware of a organization called Fisher House that provides lodging, and with the help of volunteers, some food for families of veterans who require care away from home or whose families must travel to be with them. The lodging is top notch and there is a complete kitchen with refridgerator and freezer so families can store and prepare meals. As I said earlier, volunteers also provide food. This is from the email:

We stayed at the Stratton VA Fisher House ( which was a couple of hundred yards away from the hospital where my Dad was a patient. While reservations are required (there are only so many rooms), you can stay as long as necessary. The rooms are very spacious, two full or queen size beds, TV, dresser, closet, private bath, etc.. There is a communal kitchen with all new appliances, flatware, cookware, pots, pans, dinnerware, utensils, and supplied common items such as spices, condiments, some veggies, and the like. A huge refrigerator/freezer and separate cupboard space allows a family to lay in a supply of food so that fast food or restaurant dining is by choice rather than necessity. Additionally, at least at this house, local volunteers bring in a lot of baked goods – cookies, cakes, scones, breads, etc.. And, this being the Christmas season, the manager of the facility, in conjunction with some local volunteers, prepared an entire Christmas ham dinner with all the “fixin’s”. It was in the refrigerator, all sliced and ready to microwave for a wonderful dinner. Eat in the kitchen or in the formal dining room, and relax afterward with a cup of tea in front of the fireplace in the library. I almost hated to leave!
Zachary and Elizabeth Fisher did very well in business. They wanted to do something for their country and decided to give help and comfort to it’s greatest asset – it’s military forces; the men and women who, past and present, have given so much to keep this the greatest country on the face of the earth, bar none!

As you can see, this was a nice place for a family to stay and relieve some of the stress and pressures that accompany the illness of a loved one as well as some of the costs associated with travel. The Fisher House is recognized by the DOD "America Supports You" program and 97% of all donations go to the organization with only 3% for administrative and fundraising. This is indeed a very nice way to support the families and the service members who have given so much to our country.

The purpose of this post is two fold. First, I wanted to make this information available to anyone who needs the services of the Fisher House. With the ongoing war on terror there are, as unfortunate as it is, many people who are injured and brought home for extended care and lengthy hospital stays. We also have an aging veteran population that requires care. I hope that those loved ones who must endure the hardship of injury or illness involving their veterans will find this information useful. I also ask that if you have discretionary income and are looking for a worthy cause to donate the money to, you will consider the Fisher House. Information on contributing can be found here.

The entire email can be read here but I want to echo the final paragraph:

While I pray that you, and any veteran reading this, never need avail yourselves of hospital care, if the need arises, Fisher House will be there to help out you and your family during those difficult times.

Cross posted at Big Dog's Weblog