Canceled fundraiser can’t stop Kathy’s House Foundation

Local News

MARSHALL COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF) – Canceled. That seems to be the word of the summer. Event after event this year is being ravaged by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

While we are losing social events, nonprofits are losing fundraising dollars. 

For Kathy’s House Foundation, they’re so close to the goal of creating a hospitality house for patients and families at WVU Medicine Reynolds Memorial Hospital and the surrounding community.

Thanks to COVID-19 their big weekend fundraiser planned for August is now the latest event to be postponed until 2021.

We are very blessed as a family and we just want to be able to reach out and help others.

Jane Criswell, Co-Founder, Kathy’s House

Kathy Criswell Martin, the namesake of Kathy’s House, was a nurse. 

So, her family says canceling their upcoming fundraiser to keep everyone safe was a difficult, but necessary decision. 

We actually sat down and that’s how we kind of talked about things. What would she want us to do? We knew that we had to we had to hold off.

Jane Criswell, Co-Founder, Kathy’s House

The community has rallied around this family’s mission, meaning last year’s 5K race and steak fry were well attended.

We had 150 runners on that first time, so we knew that we would have a big crowd. We also with our steak fry generally sell 500 tickets.

Jane Criswell, Co-Founder, Kathy’s House

That made it near impossible to meet the ever changing COVID-19 gathering guidelines.

Canceling the event doesn’t mean Kathy’s House’s mission stops.

It makes the need for Kathy’s House even greater and we realize that. 

Jane Criswell, Co-Founder, Kathy’s House

In fact, the need has increased with the addition of behavioral services and an emergency room expansion at WVU Medicine Reynolds Memorial Hospital.

We are all saying through this pandemic that life can throw us some curve balls and that’s what happens when people go to the hospital and aren’t anticipating needing a place to stay.

Jane Criswell, Co-Founder, Kathy’s House

Criswell said they were close to obtaining a physical property, but that too was delayed by the pandemic.

However, they will still continue the mission in the meantime with projects like Kathy’s Bags and distributing meals with Noah’s Pantry.

We are just so anxious to get it up and running and and to be able to get back to fundraising to be able to make this happen.

Jane Criswell, Co-Founder, Kathy’s House

Kathy’s House is now working on purchasing an office because the work has outgrown its current space.

The weekend fundraiser will be in August of 2021 next year, but in the meantime they hope to plan a New Year’s Eve fundraiser at St. Jude Hall if it is safe to do so.

For updates, or if you’d like to donate to the cause, visit the new Kathy’s House website at

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