Marshfield (OnFocus) – Marshfield Clinic Health System serves rural Wisconsin communities, and many cancer patients have to travel hours each way to receive care. For those who are already under financial strain, the cost of traveling far from home for treatment can be overwhelming. COVID-19 has added to the financial burden on these families.
Since the American Cancer Society closed the Hope Lodge in Marshfield, which provided free lodging for cancer patients in need, many families are now left with an uncertain future. To address this, Marshfield Clinic Health System Foundation has established an emergency cancer patient lodging fund so that cancer patients can get the care they need without worrying about how they will afford a place to stay.
“We are truly grateful for the community’s amazing response as we pull together to provide care to families on a cancer journey,” said Teri Wilczek, Chief Philanthropy Officer at MCHS Foundation. “With the American Cancer Society’s abrupt closing of the Hope Lodge, we are working quickly to find alternate housing for our cancer patients. MCHS will be updating a facility on Western Ave, the former House of the Dove, that we are calling Cattails Cottage, to create interim housing for those traveling to Marshfield for cancer care.”
Cattails Cottage has several benefits, including: MCHS owns the house, it’s located on the medical campus, it has an elevator, there are 11 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms as well as 2 kitchens and laundry and a nice deck.
“Unfortunately, it needs a lot of work to make it a clean, safe and comfortable home away from home for our patients,” said Wilczek. “The space has been used by medical students and interns, but it’s dated. It needs all new flooring, paint, appliances, furniture, beds, mattresses, TVs and a lot of TLC.”
There are three ways to get involved now:
1) Volunteer (to help keep the costs of refurbishment down). Help is needed clearing out old furniture, ripping out carpet, and cleaning out the kitchens. To help, sign up here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/20F0845A8AB2DA64-cancer
2) Provide items on the wish list (see below)
3) Make a donation to this important project. Support will be used immediately to help us prepare Cattails Cottage for patients starting early September. Gifts are tax-deductible and 100% goes to the project!
“There is an urgent and immediate need for lodging for cancer patients, and you can help,” said Wilcek. “Thank you for giving new hope to brave people fighting cancer.”
· Dishwasher tablets
· Dish Soap
· Storage bags (gallon, sandwich, quart)
· Saran Wrap, Press n Seal
· Aluminum Foil
· K Cups; Hot Chocolate, Tea
· Granola bars, Oatmeal
· Toilet Paper
· Paper Towel
· Paper Plates
· Plastic Utensils
Laundry, Cleaning Supplies:
· Liquid laundry detergent
· Dryer Sheets
· Clorox, anti-bacterial wipes
· Garbage bags (13 gal, 50 gal)
· Cleaning products
· Bath Towels (beige)
· Hand Towels (beige)
· Wash Cloths
· Queen sheet sets
· Twin Sheet sets
· Postage stamps
· Batteries (AA, AAA, 9-volt)
· First aid supplies
· Gift cards – grocery stores, Target, etc.
We welcome your stories! Contact us at [email protected]!