More than 300 friends of University Hospitals and the UH Fertility Center gathered at the home of Cathy Kilbane and Don Bullock in July for Together We Make a Family, a sold-out summer benefit supporting Partnership for Families (PFF). The event raised more than $350,000 for PFF, which helps couples at UH Fertility Center overcome barriers to starting a family such as a failed in vitro fertilization attempt, genetic disease or cancer.
Guest speaker Katie Liebas shared an emotional story of her battle with cancer and the stem-cell transplant that saved her life but that threatened to destroy her ability to have children unless she froze her eggs for the future.
Katie and her husband, Adrian, were excited to learn that they had an option for a future pregnancy but with mounting medical bills, the couple simply could not afford the procedure. After several phone calls, they were elated to learn that PFF would help them.
Katie credits James Goldfarb, MD, Division Chief of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at UH Cleveland Medical Center and PFF co-founder (along with Nancy Lerner Fisher) with giving the couple renewed hope. Dr. Goldfarb “lifted a weight off my shoulders that felt unbearable at times,” she said.
In 2012, Katie, Adrian and their son Cooper welcomed triplet boys, born prematurely at 31 weeks. The couple brought them home from the hospital three years to the day that Katie had arrived home from transplant.
In an emotional letter she read aloud at the benefit for PFF, Katie expressed deep gratitude for Dr. Goldfarb, his staff and Partnership for Families: “Thank you … for all that you have done for our family. I asked how I could repay you someday and you stated ‘spread the word of the program.’ I want you to know Dr. Goldfarb that we do, we will, and my children will always know that their existence was possible due to the generosity of so many.”
Partnership for Families
Partnership for Families gives couples a second chance at having a family. We help couples overcome barriers to starting a family such as a failed in vitro fertilization (IVF) attempt, genetic disease concern or cancer diagnosis.
Through generous donations from people like you, couples do not have to abandon the hope of having children. Partnership for Families provides qualifying individuals with grant funding to freeze eggs for the future or to try IVF again.
The Partnership for Families program at UH has become a true partnership in which diverse people who understand and have experienced the pain of infertility have joined together to help couples who have yet to attain their dream of having a family.
Click here to learn more about UH Partnership for Families