My wife Ami and I have been Cole Foundation board members since its inception. We joined with the understanding that this would be an organization whose mission was to benefit, what was at that time Charles Cole Memorial Hospital, and the surrounding communities. Since the journey began, there have been numerous changes and transitions throughout the organization and with the foundation as an entity. It has grown into a foundation that supports the hospital here in Coudersport and its outlying rural health centers and its facilities. Over the years we have watched and been part of the foundation's growth and support of our community. Every penny earned, rose, or donated has been put back into our local community and facilities to better the healthcare availability and options and to make things more comfortable for patients. Through the foundation's initiatives and fundraisers, patients and family members here at UPMC Cole can enjoy a kinder, more comfortable, and more sophisticated healthcare experience.
The initiatives we choose to support through the Cole Foundation are the Light up a life, Operation appreciation, the annual golf tournament, and the honor your caregiver programs. These initiatives allow for us to support the foundation and the specific mission of each of its programs while at the same time memorializing and honoring those close, and important to us, in a special, yet personal way.
My father passed away recently and he had previously been a patient on our skilled nursing and rehabilitation floor for approximately one year. While we were there we noticed the care and compassion that was provided to him by each and every person. After his passing, we were trying to decide how he would like to be remembered and honored. Rather than having donations sent for flowers, we decided to have donations sent to the Cole Foundation and have them earmarked for use on the skilled nursing and rehabilitation floor for patient activities and supplies. We saw a very, very generous outpouring of donations in his name and were able to witness for ourselves the monies being used to specifically address our request. This is probably the biggest reason that we continue to support the Cole Foundation and its initiatives. It gives us a way to directly see how and where our funds are being used. We see that the money doesn’t get put into a kitty or sent to a larger corporate entity. It is used here in this hospital, in this community to help make things more comfortable and to cover shortcomings that may exist in funding from other sources.
The Cole Foundation has provided us with a way to be able to give back to our community in the most direct helpful way we can. It has a multitude of different programs and options available to suit the needs of different donors. It’s an organization that is run by folks from the area who live here day in and day out and use the Cole facilities for their, and also, their families' health care needs on a daily basis.
“The Cole Foundation has provided us with a way to be able to give back to our community in the most direct helpful way we can.”
— Dr. Terry Foust