Thursday, September 12, 2013

Travel Counts This September for St. Jude with Expedia and Glimpse inside the Target House


Disclosure: Expedia made the trip to Memphis and St. Jude possible. As always, my opinions are my own.

Expedia Dream Team Bloggers Pre-Tour of the Facilities at the Research Hospital
Recently, I was invited to tour and learn more about the St. Jude facilities in Memphis. I was delighted to make the trip as learn more about about St. Jude has been on my list of charity-service centers to learn more about.
Elaine and Maria enjoying the photo booth with a party goer

This September is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and what better place to learn about its treatment, and we can help with its cure. Situated in Memphis, Tennessee and named after the patron saint of lost causes is the only pediatric cancer center certified by the National Cancer Institute as a Comprehensive Cancer Center. St. Jude Children's Research Center fits the bill. They provide whole child, whole family treatment services designed to keep the family together as best as possible while providing groundbreaking treatment services that are freely shared with scientists and doctors worldwide. We heard multiple times over the trip that one child treated at St. Jude enables thousands of children worldwide to be treated and possibly, hopefully saved.
Serving During The Around the World Party at Target House

One spectacular point that made my heart smile is that never, at any point, does any family of a child treated at St. Jude receive a bill for services or care and in many cases, other familial needs are taken care of so that families can focus getting healthy, staying healthy and rebuilding their lives after the trauma of a cancer diagnosis.
Image of the Tiger Woods Library at the Target House

I have posted some pictures of the trip in my article currently running at Miss A, but as a book lover and a teacher, I have to share my favorite space, the Tiger Woods Library in the St. Jude Target House, a 90+ room dorm-like facility that that has 2 bedroom apartments for families that have treatment plans that require their children receive between 90day and 3 year protocols in Memphis. We were lucky enough to get to assist with the Around the World Family Day festivities, meet with families and just engage in the experience. There were yummy foods representative of 5 different world regions, arts and crafts, dancing, music and a fabulous photo booth to commemorate the occasion.
Image of the Tiger Woods Library at the Target House

There was such a feeling of joy, peace, hope and life flowing through the space. I saw families together, and yes, some of the children looked sick, but not all in fact. What we learned was that some things can't be seen just by looking and that more than anything families really want to have as normal experiences as possible and that hope matters more than you know. My heartstrings got tugged; my heart opened up wide, and I became really thankful for what I have been given. My children. Our health. Our lives. Our families. The time we've been given to make memories. The gift of opportunity. Our journey. Our small struggles and our faith.
One of 150 Dream Trips that Expedia is Offering Throughout September
Right now, this September, Expedia is offering 150 Dream Trips to those who enter and offer their support to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital; they are also offering discounts and sweet coupon for booking travel using their mobile app. More details are available at http://st.jude.expedia.com

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