the scene at the Target House 15th anniversary celebration.

home away from home: celebrating 15 years of Target House at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Most of Target’s team members know that Target House at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. provides no-cost, long-term housing and care for pediatric patients and their families, thanks to the hundreds of volunteer hours they dedicate to Target’s St. Jude partnership each year. Senior group director of stores Brian Boucher has had a closer look than most.
 
In 2010, Brian’s family lived at Target House for six months when his daughter was being treated for a rare form of Leukemia. “I am forever grateful for Target’s support of St. Jude through Target House,” said Brian. “I’m humbled to work for a company that supports St. Jude in their mission of saving the lives of children like they did with my daughter.”
 
The Bouchers are one of more than 4,200 families nationwide who have sought care at Target House, which is celebrating its 15th anniversary this year as part of Target’s commitment to wellbeing, service and education. A few miles from the hospital’s campus, Target House’s 98 furnished two-bedroom apartments serve as a home away from home for families with children undergoing difficult and often lengthy treatments for cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Through St. Jude’s partnerships, like the one with Target, patient families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food.
 
“Over the past 15 years, Target team members, volunteers, celebrity partners and vendors have been inspired by the courage and resilience of the patients and families who have spent time at Target House. By alleviating worries about lodging, food and other everyday needs, a stay at Target House enables families to focus solely on the health of their child,” said Laysha Ward, president of Community Relations, Target. “I’m proud that Target’s commitment to wellbeing, service and education are brought to life through our partnership with St. Jude at Target House, and together we’ll be able to impact the lives of many more in the years to come.”
 
To celebrate its 15th anniversary and bring smiles and joy to the patients of St. Jude, Target House threw a grand carnival and invited special guests, Sugarland singer Kristian Bush and DJ Irie, to perform. And of course Target’s beloved mascot Bullseye was on hand throughout the festivities.
 
“It’s amazing to see how both the Target House facility and community are built to support these families,” said Kristian. “My favorite part of the celebration was meeting the families and kids, hearing their stories, seeing their courage…and getting covered in silly string.”
 
To make the patients and families time at Target House as enjoyable as possible, several of Target’s partners have donated and remodeled rooms, including the Shaun White Great Room, the Brad Paisley Lodge, the Scott Hamilton Art and Fitness rooms and more. New to Target House is the DreamWorks Studio Room brought to life with DreamWorks animation computer stations, a Shadow Play Wall and a massive library of DreamWorks BlueRays, DVDs and Media Books. This special closed-circuit DreamWorks channel will play DreamWorks Animated feature films and short films, allowing those staying at Target House as well as all patients across the St. Jude campus to have the ability to view premieres of new releases the same time they open in theaters!
 
Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to more than 80 percent since it opened 50 years ago. Do you want to help support St. Jude’s mission of advancing cures, prevention and treatment for pediatric diseases and cancer in hopes of driving the overall survival rate for childhood cancer to 90 percent in the next decade? Sign up for the St. Jude Give thanks. Walk taking place on Saturday, Nov. 22 in 65 communities nationwide to raise funds to support the lifesaving mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. In celebration of Target House’s 15th anniversary, Target is proud to further its commitment to St. Jude as the first National Series Sponsor for the 2014 St. Jude Give thanks. Walk.

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