Over 120 people gathered at the Pillars Event Center in Taylorville Wednesday night, to kickoff fund raising efforts for the Hope House of Central Illinois, described as a refuge for grieving parents and their families to find hope following the loss of a child.
A non-profit organization was started earlier this year by 3 couples that had children that died—Michael and Teresa St. Louis, Randy and Gina Thompson, and Jon and Monica Wamsley.
Following dinner, Randy Thompson told the crowd of the 3 families' journeys following deaths of their children.
A couple of videos shown following Thompson's presentation gave these startling statistics: There are nearly 600 reported deaths of children age zero to 24, within 100 miles of Taylorville, every year, and over 200 of them are infants. Counting family members and relatives, the videos pointed out, that's over 5-thousand people a year affected by death of a child every year within 100 miles of the Christian County seat.
The evening ended with asking the crowd to pray, volunteer or donate toward the Hope House non profit organization, so that land can be purchased and the proposed house built.
More information can be obtained on-line at hopehouseofcentralillinois-dot-org.