In our recent year-end message to our followers and supporters, we shared the touching stories of Ankit Bhuta, who sustained severe injuries in a motorcycle accident, and Sandra Gantt, a returning guest who continues her battle with leukemia. One Kiwanian from Fortuna, California sent me this email in response.
Thank you for those heartwarming stories! With little information about particular individual people, I tend to lose interest in things far away and concentrate on needs locally. Stories like these two do help me to know the details from Kiwanis House and how my meager contributions add up with others to meet such needs. Thanks for sharing!
To you, my Fortuna friend, I say thank you for taking two minutes out of your day to offer this feedback. In your few words, you have poignantly given credence to our most persistent marketing challenge – persuading others that Kiwanis Family House is much more than a local Sacramento project. By design, we serve families from everywhere except Sacramento. There are compelling reasons why more than 100 Kiwanis Clubs from throughout – and beyond – our California-Nevada-Hawaii District are official sponsors of Kiwanis Family House.
Mr. Fortuna, in a typical year, we host 30 families from your home county of Humboldt. Nearly one-third of them are your Fortuna neighbors. Truly, you are concentrating on local needs when you send us your “meager” dollars to help us care for them. Ms. Carson City, Nevada, when you donate funds so that we can keep our doors open, you serve 15 of your neighbor families who stay at Kiwanis Family House in a typical year. Mr. Contra Costa County, California, we welcome about the same number of your neighbors through our doors. Ms. Monterey County, we see half a dozen families from your home region. Notably, we average at least one family a year from the Empire State of New York, home to KFH Sponsor Fordham University, Bronx Kiwanis Club.
From wherever we hail, it is indeed easy to lose interest in happenings far away. That being our reality, I am always moved when people with caring hearts reach across hundreds or thousands of miles to ensure that families from their own communities are financially supported while dealing with serious illness or injury away from home.
The Affordable Care Act has delivered increased numbers of low-income families to our partner hospitals and they, in turn, are referring them to us. Remember that Kiwanis serves these families whether or not they have the means to pay us house rent. When families cannot afford to pay for their stay here, Kiwanis Family House bears the cost. In our prior appeal, we asked all of you to remember Kiwanis Family House as you consider the benefits of year-end giving.