Nearly 100 Families Have Been Given a Home-Away-From-Home in the Course of Receiving Organ Transplants and Related Medical Care
Cleveland, OH, July 20, 2015: On July 20, Transplant House of Cleveland, a nonprofit home-away-from-home for organ transplant patients and family members who travel across the country to Cleveland for medical care associated with organ transplantation, will mark the first anniversary of its opening. Nearly 100 families have received housing and community support over the last year, thanks to Transplant House’s eight suites and community space. But many families have also been turned away due to no vacancy. Because of the high demand for this unique home-away-from-home, Transplant House is opening seven new suites this week, bringing its total number to fifteen.
After a year of operating almost completely on volunteer energy and expertise, Transplant House also just hired its first Executive Director, Elaine Turley. “Our board knew it was time to ensure steady, high-quality service to families and to support Transplant House’s growth by hiring an Executive Director,” explains Board President, Marty McGreevy. “Elaine brings skills in operations, fundraising and program development from her prior work at the Ronald McDonald House of Cleveland and the Breakthrough Schools. She also has a personal connection to the mission as a result of her father’s liver transplant.” Erica Miller, Transplant House Co-Founder adds, “Elaine is a co-founder and has been with me and Art Thomson since this house was a dream articulated over lunch. She has demonstrated her passion and commitment to our mission through her many, many hours of volunteer service since the organization’s inception.”
For Elaine, this dream stems back to 1996 when she, her parents, and others incorporated a nonprofit with the same mission. “Our efforts back then led to some “band aid” approaches to helping families who are going through evaluation for and receipt of an organ transplant,” Elaine explains. “My parents were the first to advocate for what Transplant House now is.
“The first guests who occupied our first suite on July 20 of last year, are still with us- Ashley, a young woman from Arizona who needs a multi-visceral transplant, and Miriam, her mother,” explains Elaine. “Imagine if they had been spending those months, under that kind of stress, in a small hotel room, cut off from community, and facing those prohibitive costs,” explains Elaine. “Instead of being isolated, they have received the support of our volunteers and established a wonderful routine in their own home-like apartment. They’ve also become the consummate neighbors to our other guests-welcoming them, listening to them, encouraging them.” Ashley and Miriam’s stay is subsidized in part by Cleveland Clinic, and in part by philanthropic support. “We have other guests who, like Ashley and Miriam, have many needs that our community can support,” Elaine says, “and we are actively looking for financial gifts, in-kind donations and volunteers.” “It should also be noted that among the greatest needs is the gift of life that is given through organ donation.”
Transplant House of Cleveland is located on Mayfield Road between E. 115th Street and Circle Drive, in a two-story brick apartment building. Each apartment offers living room, bedroom, kitchen, bath, and balcony overlooking the front lawn. Families are asked to contribute $60 per night for use of an apartment, though the board and hospitals work to raise funds to reduce that cost for long-term families. Transplant House of Cleveland is financially supported by kind individuals and by University Circle, Inc., Lifebanc, Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals Case Medical Center.
For more information about Transplant House of Cleveland, please visit the Transplant House of Cleveland web site: www.transplanthouseofcleveland.org or contact Elaine Turley, Executive Director, at 216-973-2691 or firstname.lastname@example.org.