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Nonprofit Housing Organization Expanding Services to Families with VA Health Care System Loved Ones in Pittsburgh Area


Apr 3, 2024

The Fisher House program is helping military and veteran families by providing free housing for family members who live more than 50 miles away from the VA health care system where their loved one is receiving care. This helps reduce financial burdens and stress associated with traveling long distances to be with their loved ones. In the Pittsburgh area, one housing center is located next to the VA hospital in Oakland, accommodating up to 10 families at a time.

Mary Ellen Austin, who works with a volunteer group at the Fisher House, emphasizes the importance of providing families with a place to stay where they can also relieve stress. The Fisher House offers professionally decorated homes with a beautiful kitchen, private bedrooms, and baths. Families stay at the Fisher House for an average of six days, saving them an average of $1,900 in expenses.

The Fisher House is planning to expand its services by building a new facility in O’Hara Township, with the goal of opening in 2026. This new facility will provide opportunities for more families, especially those with loved ones in hospice, nursing home, or rehab care. The cost of building one Fisher House is $9 million, with $3 million needing to be raised locally. Corporate sponsorships are being sought to help bridge the funding gap.

KDKA-TV producer Ashley Funyak contributed to this report, which highlights the impact of the Fisher House program on military and veteran families in need of support during times of medical care and treatment.

By editor

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