Monday, November 22, 2010
Many of you have been asking how you can help Jessica and RJ (and now baby Courtney) as they work through the most difficult situation of their lives. We have an answer. It's crude, it's direct, but it's the truth - they need financial help.
See that shiny new DONATE button over there on the right? Clicking on that will bring you to PayPal where you can make a donation direction from your bank account if you are a member of PayPal, or from your credit card if you aren't. It's super easy. Jessica will be able to put these gifts directly into her bank so that she can start to pay her mounting expenses. You can also send a check made out to Jessica Romero to:
c/o C. Jaynes
1042 Glen Dr.
San Leandro, CA 94577
We've often said here at blog central that we don't know how Jessica is holding up so well. Throughout everything, she has stayed in the moment and is the picture of strength. Some of us at headquarters have a tendency to worry more. Why?
*As a fifth grade teacher and a single parent, Jessica has only 34 paid days off before she has to take unpaid leave. Unfortunately, unlike other districts, the Santa Rosa City Schools district where she works won't allow other teachers to donate their sick days which would allow her to get more paid days off. Right after Christmas, she will no longer have an income until RJ is better and she can return to work.
* We want to make sure that RJ has a home to come back to when he gets 'days off' from the hospital. He should be able to go home for a few days or a week between chemo treatments and we want to make sure that paying the rent isn't a problem so that he can sleep in his own bed in his own room. One short term goal is to get six month's rent and utilities paid so that this isn't a concern.
* Medical expenses are going to be high. Beautiful Courtney is going to require several surgeries to repair her bilateral cleft lip and we can't begin to imagine the bills that will come in from so many days in the ICU. Another short term goal is to make sure their insurance premiums are paid for the next six months. Long term, we'd love to help her cover some of the high costs of getting RJ well again.
Many people have talked about raising money to help. There will be a car wash in Sebastopol very soon (hopefully on a non-rainy day) and we'll keep you posted.
Just to show what can happen - several of RJ's friends made a sign and went door to door in their neighborhood. A big shout out to Linzey, Rene, Jeff, David, Sophie, Katrina, Leo and Shale - as of this writing, they've raised over $600 that they will deliver to Jessica in the next week. Thanks guys, for showing the adults how it's done!
Every little bit helps. We've heard of kids saving their allowances to give to RJ. One family is figuring out what they would spend on holiday gifts for the extended family and donating that amount instead. Whether you can spare $10 or $1000 (and if you are the kind of person who can spare $1000, we'd love to meet you) every amount is acknowledged and appreciated more than you know. It's not just money for Jessica and RJ - it's piece of mind that things are being taken care of so that they can focus on healing and coming home for good.
Thanks so much for your support! It truly does take a village.