Claire’s Place Foundation Expands COVID-19 Programs to Support People with Cystic Fibrosis

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Non-profit reflects on trying year for the cystic fibrosis community & looks ahead to 2021.

"I feel this program is perhaps the best way to empower the CF community,” said Work Proudly Program Participant Derek. “I've never heard about a CF program like this. The team at Claire’s Place Foundation are trailblazers."

Claire’s Place Foundation, a non-profit organization providing support to children and families affected by cystic fibrosis (CF), is pleased to announce that its COVID-19 Emergency Fund and new Work Proudly Program have had a significant impact assisting the CF community through the pandemic and will expand in 2021. The fund provided essential needs to people with CF throughout the COVID-19 outbreak, while the Work Proudly Program is supporting the community long-term with job training and equipment needed for work-from-home employment.

“My daughter Claire certainly has been our angel as we endured this difficult year,” said Claire’s Place Foundation Executive Director Melissa Yeager. “As the most vulnerable to COVID-19, the CF Community needed us more than ever. I am so proud of our team and supporters that quickly jumped in at the onset of the pandemic to provide emergency funds to families with CF. Jobs rapidly evaporated, limiting the financial ability to purchase everything from cereal to copayments for medications. To date, we have helped 1,039 individuals, giving over $46,500 for daily essential needs. As quarantining prolonged, more and more individuals with CF and their families were impacted and lost their jobs. In response, we created the Work Proudly Program to provide certificate training and the equipment needed to gain and maintain meaningful, safe, remote employment for adults with CF and caregivers. The program has attracted an overwhelming amount of supporters, top grants and a waitlist of participants. We look forward to expanding it in 2021.”

In 2020, the Claire’s Place Foundation Work Proudly Program helped 15 people with CF and caregivers learn a trade that can be done from anywhere. They want to learn, they want to work, they want to be empowered, they just need the right training and tools to manage their job from home, the hospital or from wherever the wild CF ride takes them. "I feel this program is perhaps the best way to empower the CF community,” said Work Proudly Program Participant Derek. “I've never heard about a CF program like this. The team at Claire’s Place Foundation are trailblazers."

“This year was unprecedented territory for us all and I know Claire is so proud of how her legacy, the Claire’s Place Foundation, has adapted to meet the short-term and long-term needs of people with CF due to this pandemic,” said Melissa. “We also recently gained another angel, our good friend, supporter and retired Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh. Tony supported us in many ways from giving Claire a stage and literally the jacket off his back, to funding our Hospital Playroom Program through Zappos for Good. We will miss him dearly and will carry on his mission of creating happiness with the opening of our second playroom at The Memorial Care Miller Children’s and Women’s Hospital in Long Beach, California, as soon as it is safe to do so. As we look to 2021, we are excited to celebrate our 10th anniversary and make it another impactful year, whatever the world throws at us!”

To assist Claire Place Foundation’s mission, please visit the website to make a tax-deductible donation. The Work Proudly Program is looking for supporters and is in critical need of laptops. To become a supporter of this program please visit here.

About Claire’s Place Foundation, Inc.
Claire’s Place Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization providing support to children and families affected by cystic fibrosis (CF). Claire’s Place Foundation is named in honor of Claire Wineland who lived with CF her entire life and passed away at the age of 21. Claire was an activist, author, TEDx Speaker, social media star and received numerous awards. Claire’s foundation was a way for her to assure that others living with CF enjoyed the same hope, strength and joy that she enjoyed. Recipient of Los Angeles Business Journal’s “Small Nonprofit of the Year,” the foundation provides grants to families affected by CF, offering both emotional and financial support. Today, Claire’s Place Foundation continues to carry on Claire’s legacy. For more information and make a donation, please visit http://www.clairesplacefoundation.org.

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Carrie Callahan
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