Why We Chose COTA

Deciding to start a support and fundraising campaign for COTA in honor of Anna was not an easy decision for us. On the one hand, we are blessed to have good jobs and great health insurance – easily something we’ve taken for granted in the past but are so grateful for now that serious health concerns have hit our family in the past year. We are acutely aware that not everyone is as fortunate in the health insurance department.

On the other hand, we have no idea what Anna’s future healthcare needs will entail. We know she will need ongoing care and medical supervision for a very long time. Even as an adult, she will need regular check-ups that go beyond an annual physical. We hope there comes a time when she gets a cold and we won’t automatically start worrying about bigger problems or complications. But, certainly for the foreseeable future, that will not be the case.

We were also conscious of our very supportive (and generous) network. Between our families and friends, and current and previous professional opportunities, we have an incredible network that stretches from San Francisco to Washington, D.C. and beyond. We are humbled and grateful by so many offers to help and support our family in any way possible. From our amazing community at Bridges Preschool, to an awesome fun run in Washington, D.C. put on by dear friends, to a generous offer from a photographer friend in another state, and the daily support we receive from our family, friends and neighborhood. Truly, we are blessed beyond words.

Despite such well-meaning and loving intent, however, we were (and are) simply not comfortable accepting personal financial support. There are wonderful websites and fundraising drives available through websites like Caring Bridge or Go Fund Me, but they were not avenues we wanted to pursue. Through Phoenix Children’s Hospital, however, we were introduced to the Children’s Organ Transplant Association (COTA).

COTA is an incredible organization that sets up accounts in honor of pediatric transplant patients. Supporters can donate (tax deductible even) in honor of patients, like Anna, and those funds are used to assist with transplant-related expenses, like out-of-pocket costs, prescriptions, etc. Those expenses are submitted directly to COTA – the money never passes through our hands, which is incredibly important to us.

But what really sold us on COTA is that COTA's support for Anna follows her for the rest of her life, and that is such a relief to us as parents. Nobody knows what the future holds, what her healthcare needs will look like, what will happen to us, what Anna’s career path will be or, perhaps most frightening of all, what the state of our health insurance industry will be like in 10-15 years or more.

Knowing that COTA is there gives us a sense of peace, and we are so appreciative. For those of you who have given, or are considering it, please know that these generous contributions are less about helping us financially at this time – and more about providing healthcare security for Anna for decades to come.

With heartfelt thanks,

Tim & Melissa

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