The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences is an imposing and impressive campus situated in the heart of the Capital City. At UAMS, a world-class team of experts inspires patients every day and it’s a landmark in the city that is hard to miss along the West Markham corridor. But for many families, it’s the small structure across from the campus that serves as a beacon of hope on the long road to recovery. This place is Home for Healing.
Formerly Family Home, Home for Healing supports those traveling more than 50 miles to receive cancer treatment and the caregivers of NICU patients. Many of these guests would forgo critical care at Little Rock hospitals without an affordable place to stay. “We offer a life preserver to our guests by making lodging available in a secure and comfortable environment,” says Home for Healing Chairman Kristi Moody. “We’re committed to going above and beyond to assist them in finding resources they need during very difficult times.”
Professionally, Kristi works for Windstream Holdings. She was introduced to the facility through friend and Home for Healing Executive Director Kristin Trulock. “When Kristin approached me about joining the board of directors, I was immediately struck by Home for Healing’s simple mission to serve fellow Arkansans and residents of neighboring states who are in need,” Kristi remembers.
Since its inception in 2003, Home for Healing has served more than 5,000 patients and families from every county in Arkansas, 36 states and at least seven foreign countries. Guests are most often referred to Home for Healing by medical staff, social workers or other patients who have benefitted from the organization’s services. The holistic approach to hospitality provides caregivers and patients the resources they need to heal. “We are really focused on meeting the whole needs of our guests. We look for partnerships with other organizations, for example City Center, to help our guests navigate services they may need during their stay, from clothing and food to filling out paperwork,” says Kristin.
Home for Healing relies on private donations, grants and room revenue, but there are ways the public can help by simply visiting their grocery store. “We often take for granted simple basic items that we use in our daily lives, like toilet paper and toiletries, but these are in great demand at our home. We welcome the community to drop off items such as cleaning supplies, toiletries, toilet paper, copy paper, ink and more,” says Kristi, referencing their needs list on the Home for Healing website. “And there are many volunteer opportunities from assisting at the home to serving on a committee.”
For Kristi, the experience has been humbling and she is committed to a bright future for the guests of Home for Healing. “When you see the challenges our guests are facing, but you’re able to provide relief in at least one way, primarily the fundamental need of a roof over their head, that goes a long way towards their healing and recovery,” says Kristi. “Some of our guests would possibly have had to forgo treatment because of this obstacle. It’s truly a way to help save lives.”