Georgia’s house nearly at goal

Foundation created to own, manage house

It looks like Georgia will get her house sooner than anyone anticipated.

Chad and Cheyna Kary, Shawano, are within $3,000 of their $75,000 goal that would allow them to purchase a house in Green Bay to provide temporary free housing for parents with infants in the St. Vincent Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

The project, called Georgia’s House, honors the Kary’s late daughter, Georgia.

“At last count, we had $72,000,” said Chad Kary. “Anything that comes in over (the goal) will be used for improvements and long-term financial stability.”

He said he and his family are amazed at how quickly the funds were raised.

“Our most optimistic timeline was six months,” he said.

In addition to fundraising, the Karys are in the process of creating a foundation to purchase the house.

“This is not a home we are going to own,” Kary said. “We have submitted the paperwork for Georgia’s House, Inc, a nonprofit separate from my wife and I.”

The nonprofit foundation will handle the money and will own the house. A board will oversee the foundation, he said.

Kary noted that creation of the foundation requires paperwork to be submitted to the federal government. That has been done, he said, and it takes 4-6 weeks to process.

“We can’t make the purchase until that’s done,” he added.

The Karys stayed in the house in Green Bay in October and November when their late daughter, Georgia, was born prematurely and placed in the NICU. A couple who did not know them allowed them to stay in the furnished house for free, allowing them to stay together as a family in a neighborhood near the hospital.

Georgia passed away in November. As the Karys reflected on her short life, they also saw how many people helped their family during that time, including the owner of the house in Green Bay.

The owner agreed to sell them the house for $75,000, and the Karys launched a fundraising campaign that included a New Year’s Eve celebration and a GoFundMe page.

As of Thursday, the GoFundMe page posted $22,075.

The New Year’s Eve fundraiser at the Launching Pad included raffles and donations, and cash donations continue to come in, he said. The event raised $45,000.

Kary said that there are no other local fundraisers planned, but relatives in Bismarck, North Dakota, have an event planned for Jan. 20.

He said he is amazed at the short amount of time that it took to raise $73,000. Although he has not heard from every donor, he said many people have shared their own stories about caring for someone who is very sick.

“A lot more people have experienced loss than we realized — people who have experienced the NICU. People who have lost children — 50, 60 years ago — have come out and shared stories,” he said.

The project, Kary said, has made them “profoundly grateful to everyone in the community. People are talking about it. There is an awareness. There are more people to thank than we can even start. Money, kind words, community outreach.”