JBA Fisher House helps families through tough times

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Matt Davis
  • Air Force District of Washington
Serving in the can be rewarding. For the families of those who serve the rewards may come with sacrifice and difficult times. The Joint Base Andrews Fisher House provides needed support to military families going through those difficult times.

Established in 1990 by Mr. Zachary Fisher and his wife Elizabeth, Fisher Houses are homes where families of sick or injured military personnel receiving medical care can stay. Currently there are 70 houses in operation with one being the JBA Fisher House.

Janet Grampp has been with the Fisher House Foundation for 22 years and currently manages the JBA Fisher House. She has seen the positive impact that the JBA Fisher House brings to military families.

"It just takes the stress away when you walk into an environment that's clean, warm and inviting with a staff that's going to go out of their way to help you," said Grampp. "When you are told that your loved one has cancer or has been injured and then you're taken into this fold, that's the first moment that we can take a little bit of that stress away so the families can focus totally on their loved one."

The Fisher House Foundation has served 277,000 military families and saved them over $320 million in lodging since 1990. The homes are located at major military and Veteran Affairs medical centers across the nation to ensure a convenient stay for military families.

Fisher Houses can have up to 21 suites, with all the amenities families need to be comfortable during their stay. The Fisher House Foundation ensures that there is never a lodging fee.

Volunteers also contribute to a huge part of the mission at the JBA Fisher House. For the JBA Fisher House President of the Board of Directors Nancy Christian, there have been many special moments within the home.

"I've seen a family with a child that was going through chemotherapy and watched her take her first steps at our house. I've helped families get ready to go trick-or-treating on the base with their kids while the mom was going through chemotherapy. I've seen families of wounded warriors have a place to lay their head and know that they would see their family member that has been wounded the next day," said Christian. "There's so many different impacting times and events that have occurred in that house."

The JBA Fisher House has been an essential source of support for military families close to the National Capital Region. Many families who have stayed at the JBA Fisher House have shown a deep appreciation for the assistance the staff provided during a difficult time.

"We have so many people getting out of the military and still needing that assistance afterwards with medical assistance and things like that," said Christian. "Non-profits like the Fisher House are a heaven sent for the government to be able to give them that home away from home."

For more information about Fisher House Foundation, Inc., visit www.fisherhouse.org.