After a Catastrophe or Before a Transplant, They Help

Founded in Radnor, HelpHOPELive helps thousands raise money for medical and therapeutic expenses.

HelpHOPELive is a Radnor-based organization that has helped people raise more than $88 million and paid close to $75 million in out-of-pocket expenses for nearly 25,000 patients.

The organization is celebrating its 30th year helping those who have suffered catastrophic injuries or have undergone transplants.


How does it work?

Imagine your child is in an accident and suffers a catastrophic injury that means he or she will have to be cared for for the rest of his or her life. You’re in shock. You’re not sure what to do. Then you are hit will out-of-pocket bills and the reality that you either have to put your child in a nursing home or outfit your home so he or she can live there.

How are you going to do — and pay for — all of that?

Through HelpHOPELive you can set up a tax-deductible fundraising campaign to help offset the uncovered expenses of your child’s care. HelpHOPELive gives materials and training to a select group of your friends or family to start fundraising for your child. The monies raised go into a regional restricted fund in honor of your child, for the region where they live, together with other funds raised in that region so that your child can still receive the federal funding he or she is allowed. Bills you need paid for your child’s care are sent to HelpHOPELive for them to pay from the regional fund.

“What we are most proud of is our personal approach connecting communities with the ones they love. And our experience in how to do fundraising has made us successful,” said executive director Lynne Samson. “We are there for families for the long haul.”

In 2000, Samson’s stepdaughter Katie was paralyzed from a sledding accident at The Willows. Katie was the organization’s first catastrophic injury campaign, and her Katie Samson Lacrosse Tournament has become a popular annual event.

But the Samsons and the family of Logan Schweiter, who nearly drowned in a Wayne creek in 2011, are not the norm. Those have been the most successful campaigns locally, and they are continuing to raise money.

To help those who do not have the support of a large community, Samson has established an emergency grant fund that in five years has provided patients with almost $500,000 in emergency funds.

“I felt it was important to have something for those who can’t fundraise,” she said.


Why not use online fundraising sites or set up account at a local bank?

According to Samson, there are five reasons why working with HelpHOPELive is more advantageous:

1.  You are still able to get government benefits like Medicaid. (Monies collected in a bank account are considered assets and would likely preclude you from getting the government’s generous benefits.)

2.  Many donors are suspicious unless their donations are going to nonprofit. They want fiscal accountability.

3.  Corporations and foundations are required to do some giving every year, and will only give to 501-c3s.

4.  HelpHOPELive gives grants, too. A tiered program offers money in celebration of their patients’ fundraising success.

5.  Their fees are much less than most banks and online sites, she said.


Celebrating 30 Years

  • HelpHOPELive office open house and ribbon cutting Feb. 28 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at its office in the Radnor Corporate Center. The public is invited to attend.
  • “HelpHOPE–Live It Up!” event on Sept. 19 from 6 to  9 p.m. at Appleford Estate in Villanova.


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