The Saigh Foundation Donates $1M Endowment

Imagine checking into a hospital with a playground in the lobby. As you head to your room, you pass a rock climbing wall, a movie theater, and basketball court. This is true for every patient who comes to Ranken Jordan Pediatric Bridge Hospital, and the mission will continue with the help of a $1 million gift – The Saigh Foundation Endowment for Care Beyond the Bedside at Ranken Jordan Pediatric Bridge Hospital.

The Saigh Foundation supports primarily the children and youth in the St. Louis region through education and health care initiatives. Founded by Fred M. Saigh, the Foundation continues his work to support the younger communities who might not otherwise receive the assistance they need.

“We cannot imagine a more fitting lifetime partner,” says Steve Lindee, chief development officer at Ranken Jordan Pediatric Bridge Hospital. “The opportunity for this historic, first time endowment offers a safety net after 77 years of institutional evolution and service to the patients of Ranken Jordan. It is unprecedented and generous, and we are deeply moved that The Saigh Foundation so generously supports our most fervent dream – transitioning kids from hospital to home through care beyond the bedside.”

The Care Beyond the Bedside philosophy reinforces that all children, regardless of medical complexities, should receive equal opportunities to participate in the same milestone-driving activities. Thus, the patients at Ranken Jordan are out of their hospital rooms for up to 70% of waking hours, dressed in the clothing of their choice and participating in a wide variety of fun, age and developmentally appropriate activities. These activities are often adaptive and focus on what the child can do.

“Supporting and investing in the health care needs of children is core to our mission, and we’re so proud to fund this endowment for Care Beyond the Bedside at Ranken Jordan,” says JoAnn Hejna, Executive Director for The Saigh Foundation. “One goal of ours is that this investment will spark additional growth for this program and more for the children at this hospital.”

The funds of this endowment will help support recreational, child life and music therapies, in particular. Child life focuses on the hospitalized child coping, finding normalcy, and improving overall developmental skill. Recreational therapy uses the lens of recreation to improve functional motor skills, develop independence, improve cognition and cope with illness and injury through the building of abilities. Music therapy is utilized to help patients reach their goals through the expression and intervention of music. These therapies embrace the beyond bedside care treatment modality. This demonstrates to children, parents and the whole family that they can enjoy a high quality of life at home together rather than be relegated to long-term institutional care. Because of this approach, patients improve more quickly and to a greater degree, enabling them to make a successful transition from hospital to home.

“This philosophy has been present with us since day one at Ranken Jordan,” Lindee says. “With the endowment from The Saigh Foundation, we can help ensure our patients and their parents have opportunities to improve physically, mentally, emotionally, socially, and developmentally so our kids can continue to grow, play and learn successfully at home.” We call it Living Support!