On what would have been Madeline’s ninth birthday, we are pleased to update our supporters on the work we have been able to do at Friends of Maddie in 2016. One year ago today we announced our new mission: to award grants to families suffering financial hardship due to the loss of a child. Since then, we have supplied substantial grants to more than thirty families.
It has been very rewarding to offer a glimmer of hope to these families in their darkest hour. While we have awarded grants to families with a wide range of financial need, the majority of families who reach out to us do so in hopes of receiving assistance to lay their child to rest. It has been heart wrenching to speak to these families and hear the anguish in their voices as they tell us they are financially unable to afford a funeral — or even burial — for their child. Losing a child is a nightmare; being unable to pay the unexpected and not insubstantial burial costs for that child is another one altogether.
Thankfully, we have often been able to work directly with the funeral homes to allow these children to be laid to rest and to supply closure for their families. We didn’t know this would be a main thrust of our work with the foundation when we started this new mission, but we are humbled to be able to supply such an important service.
Thank you again to all of you who have supported the foundation over the years. We are grateful that we are able to do this work in Madeline’s name, not just today, but tomorrow as well.