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Fisher House Foundation, Inc.

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Health, Health Support, Homeless & Housing, Philanthropy, Philanthropy, Voluntarism & Grantmaking Foundations, Temporary Housing

Mission: Fisher House Foundation is best known for a network of comfort homes where military and veterans’ families can stay at no cost while a loved one is receiving treatment. These homes are located at major military and VA medical centers nationwide, close to the medical center or hospital they serve. Fisher Houses have up to 21 suites, with private bedrooms and baths. Families share a common kitchen, laundry facilities, a warm dining room and an inviting living room. Fisher House Foundation ensures that there is never a lodging fee. Since inception, the program has saved military and veterans’ families an estimated $235 million in out of pocket costs for lodging and transportation. Fisher House Foundation also operates the Hero Miles program, using donated frequent flyer miles to bring family members to the bedside of injured service members as well as the Hotels for Heroes program using donated hotel points to allow family members to stay at hotels near medical centers without charge. The Foundation also manages a grant program that supports other military charities and scholarship funds for military children, spouses and children of fallen and disabled veterans.

Results: Families served: More than 220,000 Number of lodging days offered: Over 5.2 million 7,000 students have received $11,000,000 in scholarship awards Over 50,000 airline tickets provided by Hero Miles to service members and their families, worth nearly $73 million

Target demographics: provide temporary lodging for loved ones of those getting care at the hospital

Direct beneficiaries per year: More than 32,000 military and veterans' families

Geographic areas served: military and VA hospitals

Programs: Hero Miles, Hotels for Heroes, Scholarships for Military Children, Scholarship, Heroes' Legacy Scholarship, Newman's Own Award

Community Stories

18 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

My husband served in Vietnam. In September 2016, he had open heart surgery at the Tampa VA, on the other side of the state from where we live. The VA hospital was wonderful and I stayed right on campus at the Fisher House. What a gift to not have to spend a week's stay on hotel bills. The Fisher House was comfortable, welcoming, beautiful. Sometimes they even had meals brought in for the residents. I can't say enough about how caring Fisher House is. Thank you!

Rosalie Cutcher Moore P.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My brother passed away at the Veterans Hospital in Florida. The Fisher House provided a room for his children while he was in the hospital and had a room ready for my brother and I who were desperately trying to get there before he passed. Unfortunately, due to airline problems, we arrived too late and he had died earlier in the day. The Fisher House still welcomed us and provided a home setting for our family to grieve together for a couple of days. Thank you for the compassion and dedication to our veterans and their families. God bless.

Rebecca L. P.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Our story happened in 2005, but my experience with Fisher House started in 2002. We were stationed at Hickam in Hawaii. I was a member of the Hickam Officer's Spouses Club. Once a month we took meals to the Tripler Fisher House for the residents. I witnessed how much it meant to them to have a decent home-cooked meal. We left Hawaii in 2004. My husband deployed in May of 2005. June 17th 2005 my husband was wounded in a mine detonation. Our son and I flew to Landstuhl in Germany and stayed in the Fisher House there. We then went on an adventure and flew from Germany to Andrews AFB, then to Scott AFB, then FINALLY got to Wilford Hall. We stayed in the Fisher House at Lackland AFB for almost a month. It was the biggest relief to know that we had a place to stay, a place I could do laundry, A SAFE place to just be! It was amazing the care the staff showed to each resident. We were truly grateful. This is an excellent organization, there aren't enough words to describe how much we appreciated everything that they helped us through.

1

Client Served

Rating: 1

When I was at Walter Reed and my family needed a place to stay we were turned down. Then as I was getting my treatment I was at NICOE and started meeting groups of Navy Seals and Army SF guys, they were there for "testing" and they were all staying at Fisher House. Most recently I had to drive 4 hours to have an operation at Madigan Army Hospital and I was told "We do not currently accommodate overnight stays." I am very disappointed in the shady way that this Charity does business.

Judith M.1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Where can I start? My Hubble Mike was severely injured in Afghanistan and lost his Right hand and had multiple other traumatic injuries he almost left us. Mike was one of the first injured post 9/11, he was super unstable and barely made it to Walter Reed. The amazing Fisher House there was key in his healing process and my peace of mind. We were there for months and remember fondly all the wonderful people we met there. It was our home away from home, and provided us with so much love and kindness.
I will never forget the wonderful feeling of home walking through those doors thank you!

Michael F.6

Donor

Rating: 5

Great charity with a great mission! Thanks for all your efforts.

Cycle4Heroes

Volunteer

Rating: 5

By teaming with Fisher House Foundation we can pursue the dream of becoming the greatest cycling-based fund raiser in the Mid-Atlantic region. The Foundation added Perry Point VAMC to the to-be-built list a couple years ago which aided our awareness efforts in the Northeast Maryland. This is all enhanced by Fisher House Foundation being at the top of list of all charities Nation wide in terms of accountability. Our arrangement allows us to give to Military, Veterans, and their Families in return for their sacrifices.

5 Julie213

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband had a spinal cord injury and we live 2 hours from the Dallas VA & Fisher House. I cannot tell you how pleased I was with the way I was treated at the Fisher House. Any thing that you could possibly need is provided to you. Food, toiletries, internet, tv, alarm clock, phone, etc. I had three meals a day and snacks, but most of all I was walking distance from the hospital. All the other families there were like family. They all support each other and you hear why they are here. Sometimes when you are feeling down they all gather to give you a boost and a hug. This place is a blessing from God for the Vet's family. Not having to worry about where you will stay and how much it will cost, takes a load off your mind. Thank You Fisher House for a wonderful experience.

6

Client Served

Rating: 1

I am retired military and I recently reached out to the Fisher House for help in obtaining lodging in Houston while my wife is being treated at MD Anderson for Stage 4 Breast Cancer. When I called The Fisher House in Houston the woman on the other end of the line stated " We only allow Veterans to stay here, not their families" and ended the call. I also spoke by phone with the Director at the Fisher House at Eglin AFB near where I reside. I asked him to call his peer in Houston on my behalf. He said that he would. It has been five days....nothing. Why does Fisher House allow house managers to make policy? I am saddened and disappointed at the actions of Fisher House. I will, however, get help for my wife in Texas if I am forced to buy a tent. If I do maybe I'll set up camp on the lawn at Fisher House.

Comments ( 1 )

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FisherHouseFoundation 11/17/2014

We are so sorry for your experience with the Houston Fisher House. The houses are owned and operated by the VA or branch of the military associated with the base. The VA owns the Fisher Houses at Houston and is responsible for eligibility requirements. Both houses are consistently full and as such can only accommodate families of those getting care at the DeBakey VA Medical Center.

5

Donor

Rating: 5

When my friend lost his leg in Iraq in 2008 his mom stayed at a Fisher House for several months, and their Hero Miles program flew his dad into town on weekends (while he stayed at home working to pay the bills.) Without that support I don't want to think what would have happened.

10

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

This charity's numbers look great until you look at the salary of its leader. Four hundred thousand a year for running a charity is almost oxymoronic. I'll find one whose leadership isn't so highly paid.

Review from CharityNavigator

10

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

I am a staff member of the Veterans Administration with a Fisher House on our grounds. A service needed for so many families of the increasing number of seriously injured and damaged veterans. I was stunned to see the salary of the President of Fisher House. The Secretary of Veteran Affairs, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and so on.....could not add their salaries together to reach this amount. I will continue to support the families in many ways, but will not contribute any more money after learning about the over $400,000 salary.

5

Client Served

Rating: 5

On July 19, 2009 my son was critically injured in Afghanistan while clearing roads of improvised explosive devices. Fisher House generously paid for my airfare from San Francisco to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington DC, so that I could revisit him after some new medical complications occurred. Thank you, Fisher House.

Review from CharityNavigator

12

General Member of the Public

Rating: 2

Isn't anyone bothered by the fact that the CEO is making $355,000 year in salary? I can't understand why charities feel obliged to pay their executives such high salaries.

3 John L.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In the summer of 1999, I worked at the facilities at Walter Reed Medical Center and the annex near Bethesda. My wife, Joan, had one of her many surgeries for brain cancer and we both stayed in the welcome refuge of the DC area Fisher Houses at different periods.
I helped and enjoyed working on the landscaping and grounds. We were blessed to have such support in a tough time when family was hundreds of miles away. Vivian Wilson, who moved to Germany later, was outstanding to work with

Review from Guidestar

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

In July 2005, my then husband (who is UK Army) was working with coalition forces in Iraq - he was very seriously injured. Fortunately, he went via Ramstein in Germany before coming home to the UK, and I and my youngest child (only 7 months at the time), were able to visit him there. We stayed at the Fisher House there and it was amazing, the ethos and the surrounds, words cannot truly convey what it meant to me, but I felt supported. Sadly, there was nothing like that in the UK, but it inspired me to try and make that difference as The Fisher House had made a difference for me, hence the SSAFA Norton House 'home from home' project (reviewed in the Fisher House 'Patriot' journal Summer/Fall 2009). It was most certainly a concept worth duplicating and the support it has given to families here in the UK is amazing. A heartfelt thank you from Sue Norton x

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Im not only a volunteer for this organization but my husband is in the Army and went through a tour in Iraq. I am confident and certain that if anything were to happen we would be taken care of. Thankfully he came home fine but so many dont. The service members I see are incredible, they go through so much, they are truly fighters in ways you wouldnt imagine. I love working with them. Im honored to work with them.

5

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I was the editor of the Fisher House Magazine for many years, and as such traveled to visit many houses, heard many personal stories and read many letters written in thanks to this organization. The Fisher Houses help real people every day in their time of greatest need. The houses do not just lodge people. They hold them up - giving them support in so many ways that it is impossible to list them all. The managers are all, to a one, caring and competent people who go out of their way to be helpful. If you want to say "thank you" to a vet or a soldier, Marine or airman, there is no better way to do it than to give money to Fisher House Foundation.