To understand the wonder of Haven House, you have to stay there. I had never planned to write an article about my stay at Haven House. My husband had to undergo lung surgery and to do that we had to go to St. Louis, MO. I was alone and, having to undergo surgery myself in less than two weeks, was particularly nervous and in physical pain. The first night we were both there, we were welcomed with a tour and dinner. Breakfast and dinner are provided family style. The food was wonderful. The next day, when I was by myself, I was invited to join a family for all meals, whose son needed to be in St. Louis for the summer. There are a lot of children there going to various facilities for treatments. The atmosphere is up beat.
It is a mecca of languages and cultures. All one has to do is go into their computer room of an evening to see all ages and hear a multitude of languages. If you are here for a while and want to prepare your own meals, there are four full kitchens. While you can request a room with a TV, there are four lounges with giant screen TVs in them. There is a cooler full of snacks and even lunches, should you need them. The cost of a regular room varies from $40.00 to $50.00 per night. (Check on sponsors and grants.)
But it is the atmosphere and caring staff and volunteers that make the difference. The setting is open and inviting. Everyone is there to help you and make you feel cared for. Haven House provides shuttles to all the medical facilities so if you can't drive or don't have a car, that is not a problem. But most of all, you don't feel alone. I think not feeling alone was for me the most important. This didn't happen right away, but within 24 hours of being there, I felt a comfort that I would not have felt elsewhere.
Haven House is located on 19 acres not far from the various large hospitals in St. Louis. It is in actual walking distance (even in the hot summer) from banking services, a convenience store, drug store, and more. In addition to providing a warm and caring environment, it offers many services. Some of them are:
- Planned activities for children
- Host families
- Counseling Support
- School Enrollment connections as well as tutors if necessary
If we ever have to leave home again for one of us to seek medical care, I know that a large part of the anxiety will not be there.
I want to not only thank Haven House, but let people know about this amazing non-profit facility. To learn more, go to havenhousestl.org.
All the images are courtesy of Haven House and cannot be copied without their permission.
Where: 12685 Olive Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63141