Cases 73-75: Mother wants an education to make a better life for her daughter

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100 Neediest

Drawing by Ella Curran of Brentwood High School.

CASE 73 • T was born at just 24 weeks because her mother’s water broke too early in the pregnancy. The preemie girl weighed less than 2 pounds at birth but has managed to develop into a happy, healthy 2-year-old with the help of extensive occupational, physical and speech therapy, and her mother’s dedication. Ms. B is working on a high school equivalency program and struggles to hold a job between her studies and her daughter’s medical appointments. She would like to save money to go to college and would appreciate donations toward tuition. She is also in need of personal items such as toiletries.

CASE 74 • Health issues, financial problems and caring for four children have pushed Ms. D and her husband of 17 years apart. While they work through marital challenges, their focus is on trying to keep their children, ages 3 to 16, in private school so they have better career opportunities than their parents did. Their 3-year-old son is showing signs of heart issues and is not gaining weight. Ms. D has a blood disorder that left her hospitalized for more than a week this year. The couple’s 13-year-old daughter began suffering anxiety attacks after her mother’s hospitalization and struggles with kidney problems. Ms. D also needs dental work. Donations to help with tuition as well as toys for Christmas would be a welcome boost.

CASE 75 • Mrs. C and her husband are both struggling with health issues and associated doctor fees. She has been diagnosed with cancer. He is an amputee with diabetes. They both have to see specialists, and with a $45 copay each visit, they’re struggling to keep up with bills and mortgage payments.

Case profiles by Blythe Bernhard, Christine Byers and Jacob Barker 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, or mail a check payable to "100 Neediest Cases" (no cash) to P.O. Box 955925, St. Louis, Mo. 63195.


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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