The Foundation was formed in 1988 and incorporated in 1991 by Atlanta business leaders, parents of special needs children and healthcare providers. Together they recognized the limitations of our health insurance and governmental programs for special durable medical products for children. These gaps represent crucial equipment and daily living supplies so many special needs children required to grow and thrive. The Fragile Kids Foundation (formerly the Foundation for Medically Fragile Children) was formed to assist those families in need of aid to care effectively for their fragile children.
Since our inception, the Fragile Kids Foundation has received donated office space, utilities, postage and copying services as well as technical support from Gentiva Healthcare (formally Healthfield). Founder and Board Chair Emeritus Rod Windley established this precedent and has supported it throughout our history. This aid allows Fragile Kids to use the maximum of donations to specifically support children in need.
Generous donations from the community have allowed our organization to grow each year both in the number of children served as well as the programming available to families.
Our accomplishments over the years include
- Establishment of the Healthcare Grants Program to provide families with durable medical goods with a lasting, positive impact on children
- Expansion from metropolitan Atlanta beyond the 20 county area to a fully accessible organization for the entire state of Georgia
- Launching, growing and maintaining a Loaned Equipment Program to allow families in need of short term use of rehabilitative equipment that is needed only until the child has reached therapeutic goals or simply has outgrown the item
- Holiday party, “Project Santa” hosted for over 15 years by Sharon Umphenour and providing gifts and a wonderful brunch with Santa for families in the most dire health and financial situations. The event has been held for nearly 10 years at Ray’s on the River Restaurant, due to owner Ray Schoenbaum’s passion for our children has been with the foundation since 1988
- The Partners Program was established in 2010 to support smaller agencies in rural Georgia serving medically fragile children in group settings, such as respite homes, day camps and day cares. These agencies have no means to secure equipment to be utilized by all, such as ramping, positioning seats and therapy bikes. Fragile Kids expanded our reach from individual families to sister agencies also caring for these children yet with a different mission.