2018 Q4 Grant Recipients Announced!

Keep Swimming Foundation’s Board of Directors have selected three families to receive a combined $6,300 in financial aid for the foundation’s final quarter of 2018!

In yesterday’s announcement, Keep Swimming Foundation shared how the organization was able to double its maximum potential grant value from $1,500 to $3,000! This change was made possible by an incredible influx of donations from the foundation’s supporters this past holiday season! 

While the three selected families are experiencing unique medical situations, each family spent the most recent holiday season together in a hospital room while their loved one fought for a brighter 2019. The following are their stories:

Family #1 - Atlanta, GA – Recipients of a $3,000 Grant:

This Georgia family’s infant daughter experienced a traumatic birthing experience and was without oxygen for the first twenty minutes of her life, due to her mother’s uterus rupturing during childbirth. Once stabilized, she was diagnosed with Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) in early October. HIE is a condition that occurs in infants in which brain tissue is destroyed due to a lack of oxygen. Their daughter was placed in the hospital’s NICU nursery before being safely transported 200 miles north to a hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. This family’s baby girl remained hospitalized until the final days of 2018, when they returned to their small town in rural Georgia.

Given the child’s dire need for medical care, the family was asked by their medical staff to relocate to a new home in a larger town where proper medical care is available. Unfortunately, due to medical bills, and the non-medical expenses the family endured while living 200 miles from home, compiled with the father’s need to take work off when he was with his daughter, the family was financially drained and unable to afford the rent and security deposit required to change homes. In addition, the family’s current home is in a location that was deemed unreachable by home healthcare agencies, thus leaving the child’s mother unable to work while she remains home to manage her daughter’s new lifesaving machines and feeding tube. 

With this grant, Keep Swimming Foundation has promised this Georgia family $3,000 that will be provided in multiple, smaller grant checks between January and May 2019. These grant checks will cover the family’s monthly rent for five months.

This grant and the new home will enable the child to receive home healthcare, the mother will be able to return to work on a part-time basis, and the father will have the peace of mind knowing he can return to his full-time work schedule, all while giving them the opportunity to save money and maintain their new home so that their daughter can have a sterile and safe environment to grow near a preferred hospital.

The family has paid their first month’s rent in addition to the security deposit. They moved into their new home earlier this week.

Family #2 – Fresno, CA – Recipients of a $3,000 Grant:

In July 2018, the father of this California family was boarding a cruise ship in Seattle for a vacation to Alaska when he suddenly collapsed. Paramedics were called and within hours he was placed on life support. His children were informed and immediately flew to Seattle from their hometowns and college campuses to say goodbye to their father. While at the hospital, he was diagnosed with interstitial lung disease, a disease that results in progressive scarring of the lungs. Miraculously, he pulled through. Three days later, he was deemed healthy enough to be airlifted to a hospital in San Francisco, where he underwent dozens of tests to be added to the organ transplant wait list. In mid-August his life was saved when he received a bi-lateral lung transplant. Since receiving the transplants, he has remained in the Intensive Care Unit of his San Francisco hospital battling numerous infections and post-surgical issues.

His wife, a high school teacher, relocated to San Francisco to be with him. Despite the hospital negotiating a lower fee for her nightly hotel stays, due to the high cost of San Francisco, she has compiled nearly $10,000 in debt related to lodging, and several thousand additional dollars related to meals and public transportation.

We recently received positive news that he overcame a major hurdle this past weekend and they are hopeful he will be moving to a step-down floor next week, which is a major step towards their return to Fresno and normalcy, where he serves his community as a police officer.

 Family #3 – Akron, OH – Recipients of a $300 Grant

In May 2018, this family’s first child was born. Not long after the child’s birth, irregularities in the initial lab results led the family to be referred to a hospital in Cleveland for a series of DNA tests. It was there the child was diagnosed with Krabbe Disease, a rare disorder of the nervous system. The family was referred to a specialist in Pittsburgh, who suggested a bone marrow transplant to help slow down the effects of the disease. The first transplant failed, but we are told the second was a success. The mother has been living in Pittsburgh with the child at the hospital, while the father remains employed full-time in Akron and visits the family with supplies during the weekends. The family submitted receipts pertaining to the father’s gasoline and tollway expenses. This grant covers the total amount of receipts submitted to Keep Swimming Foundation.

Keep Swimming Foundation is only able to help families because of the generous support of our wonderful donors.

We will be selecting a new group of families at the end of March. Please consider making a donation today so that we can help families who are currently facing a dire medical situation.