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Several members of the new Hope House Committee, were guests at Tuesday's Taylorville Kiwanis Club meeting to talk about the project to build a house to be used by families that have lost children due to death.  From the left:  Will Perkins, Kiwanis president; Jon Wamsley, committee member; Teresa St. Louis, committee member; Michael St. Louis, committee member who also spoke to the Club; Kiwanis member Dick Wamsley, father of Jon Wamsley and Kiwanis Spiritual Aims Committee chair.




The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard about the proposed Hope House for families that have had children pass away, during their Tuesday luncheon at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium.

Michael St. Louis was the guest speaker.  St. Louis is the parent of 2 pre-mature babies that died at birth.  He along with his wife Teresa, and 2 other local families that have lost children, formed the non-profit Hope House of Central Illinois, with the goal of building a home near Taylorville as a retreat for grieving families that have also lost children who have passed away.

St. Louis described the process he and his wife went thru after their 2 children died, trying to find the “new normal” and attempting to put a positive spin on their loss. 

St. Louis told the Kiwanis Club that according to the Illinois Department of Public Health, some 595 children age zero to 24 die within a 100-mile radius of Taylorville each year, which represents over 53-hundred family members and friends affected by the death of a child. 

St. Louis said the proposed Hope House will serve those family members who are trying to find their “new normal”, and that many have already volunteered to help with construction.  Fund raising efforts to purchase property are already underway.  More information can be found on-line at hopehouseofcentralillinois-dot-org.

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of global organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time.  Weekly meetings are held Tuesdays at noon at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium.  For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com.

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