Gift of Life Howie’s House is proud to spotlight the Gatta Family for their incredible fundraiser for the Howie’s House.
One year ago today, Jeanille Gatta was unsure if her father, Bill, would make it to his 75th birthday.
Now, thanks to the life-saving power of organ donation and his donor family’s selfless decision to say yes, Bill is not only soon to be celebrating his 75th, but also ringing in his milestone birthday by giving back in support of the Howie’s House!
Diagnosed with advanced Stage 5 kidney disease, Bill was on dialysis for one year, and was listed for a transplant for nearly 3 years. He received his gift of life, a double kidney transplant, on September 2, 2015. After 21 days in the hospital, with his family by his side every single day, he finally returned home to continue recovery.
Even though Jeanille and her mother were fortunate enough to live near Bill’s hospital, they often found themselves sleeping on a cot in his hospital room in order to be by his side every step of the way. Jeanille and her mother fully understand the stress surrounding the transplant journey, and recognize what a resource the Howie’s House is to those who live far from the hospital. As Jeanille states, “many families are not as fortunate as us and they must rely on Gift of Life Howie’s House to support their transplant lodging needs.”
With his first birthday post-transplant quickly approaching, Jeanille wanted to find a way to give back in his honor. She quickly realized how easy it was to create a personalized fundraising page through CrowdRise, an online fundraising tool, to help her family celebrate her father’s birthday while at the same time spreading awareness and raising funds for Gift of Life Howie’s House. Jeanille set her original fundraising goal to $840, equivalent to 21 nights of lodging at the Howie’s House—and the exact number of days that her father was in the hospital! Incredibly, the Gatta family has already surpassed this goal, and they continue to gain even more support – at this point having raised over $1,000 in support of the Howie’s House!
Jeanille and her family could not be more grateful that her father will not only be able to celebrate his 75th birthday, but is healthy and recovering thanks to the Gift of Life community and their donor family. As Jeanille puts it, “there is still a continued journey to go, but my family and I are very grateful for my dad to have been blessed with two kidneys from a generous donor family.”
Do you have a birthday approaching that you want to celebrate in a thoughtful way like Jeanille and her family did? Consider creating your own fundraising page on CrowdRise today! It’s easy to setup up and a simple way to help us raise crucial funds for the hundreds of transplant families who rely on the Howie’s House as their “home away from home.” Visit CrowdRise.com to get started today!