Cases 61-63: Family struggles to stay together with mom paralyzed

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100 Neediest

Drawing by Jasmine Bao of Thomas Jefferson School.

CASE 61 • Mrs. T suffered an aneurysm last year that led to a stroke; she’s now paralyzed on her left side. She is bedridden and the constant care she requires is provided by her family. Mr. T has a heart condition which cost him his job. Their two younger children, 9 and 11, have put their lives on hold in order to help their mother. The couple’s two adult sons have autism. The family has had to make enormous sacrifices just to be able to stay together, and there’s nothing to put toward Christmas. They would appreciate any assistance you can give.

CASE 62 • Mr. R is a single father of five high-spirited boys between the ages of 10 and 18. Four are his biological sons; the fifth is the son of his deceased girlfriend. Mr. R, 56, is overwhelmed. He was laid off from work, and a few of the boys are acting up at school. Counseling is helping one of the boys.

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CASE 63 • Several years ago M became a father and sole caretaker to three young girls when he took in his nephew’s children. He cared for two of the girls when their parents were incarcerated, then their mother gave birth to a third child, so M adopted all three. It was very important to M to keep the girls together, but his new family has multiplied his expenses. The girls are now 10, 7 and 6 and need clothes, and the family could use financial assistance.

Case profiles by Sarah Bryan Miller, Jesse Bogan and Rachel Rice of the Post-Dispatch.

To give

ADOPT A CASE: For highest-need cases, the program supplies donors with a list of a family's needs. Donors are asked to meet at least one of the stated needs and provide at least one present for each person in the family. Everything goes directly to the family, through a social worker.

DONATE: Monetary gifts to the 100 Neediest Cases general fund are used to help 4,300 cases, and go directly to the families.

FUNDRAISE: Encourage friends, family and others to join you in helping. Set up a fundraising page for your adopted family or the program overall, and have an even bigger impact.

TO HELP: Call 314-421-6060 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays, visit 100neediestcases.org, or mail a check payable to "100 Neediest Cases" (no cash) to P.O. Box 955925, St. Louis, Mo. 63195.

Tradition

The tradition of 100 Neediest Cases campaign dates to 1922, when civic leaders formed the Christmas Bureau. The Post-Dispatch has partnered with the program for more than five decades, renaming it 100 Neediest Cases in 1954.

HOW IT WORKS: Social service agencies, working through the United Way, identify thousands of needy families. Volunteers then select 100 cases to be profiled in the newspaper to raise awareness.

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