Why I Give
Hear from some of our generous supporters about why they have donated to Regina Health Center.
Filling a Need
Rita Burdick Makes a Difference with a Bequest
When Rita Burdick’s mother had a major stroke at the age of 97 in 1996, she didn’t know who to turn to for care. She and her mother had lived together for all of Rita’s life, so she was extremely hesitant to leave her mother’s care to someone else. Rita’s priest helped her find Regina Health Center (RHC), where her mother lived until her death at the age of 101. Rita would visit her mother at RHC seven days a week for the four years she was there.
“I became very attached to RHC after being there so much and seeing the wonderful care they gave my mother. I felt they did everything they could to make her life as pleasant as possible,” said Rita. “RHC has been very dear to me.”
Rita is so fond of the organization, she recently made a bequest to RHC by having her attorney add a few sentences to her will. She said the process was simple and it was an easy decision. “As the government pulls back funds and the cost of goods keeps increasing, I wanted to help RHC sustain its current level of quality care. Donations are essential to doing so,” added Rita.
In addition to the bequest, Rita remains very involved with RHC. She has been the president of the Friends of Regina Health Center for the past six years and serves as a Eucharistic minister for some Sunday Masses at RHC. She also spends part of Christmas day visiting with residents and works to raise money for resident parties and other quality-of-life activities.
“If you’re asking yourself whether there is a good place for you or a parent, there is. By making donations now and through a bequest, we keep RHC a great place. There are so many places in the world that need help. RHC is unique in caring for those who have done so much for so many, including the priests, nuns and laity who call RHC their home,” added Rita.
With her bequest, RHC welcomed Rita into the Regina Society, which recognizes legacy donors who will provide support for RHC beyond their lifetime.
A Friend Gives Back
Giving goes both ways for Dr. Bob Eiben
For more than 60 years, Dr. Bob Eiben has been a friend of the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine.
Dr. Eiben began his career as a pediatrician, specializing in infectious diseases. He ran the contagious disease ward at the former Cleveland City Hospital (now MetroHealth Medical Center). He also served as the pediatrician for Parmadale Children’s Village in the 1950s and 1960s, which was administered and staffed by the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine. Working at Parmadale was important to Dr. Eiben. “I was blessed to have the opportunity of caring for children alongside the kind and caring Sisters,” he said.
In the mid 1950s, a social worker, Patricia Barrett, later to become Sr. Mary Patricia Barrett, CSA, spoke with Dr. Eiben about a child under her care. He became ill with polio and was admitted to Cleveland City Hospital. She sought Dr. Eiben’s expertise because she wanted to visit the child in the hospital, but was worried about bringing the contagious disease back with her to Parmadale. She has always remembered Dr. Eiben’s firm, but kind, response to her. “I take care of these children in the hospital and I go home every night to be with my own children. You do what you think is right,” he said. She took his advice and visited the sick child, which brought him comfort.
Once polio was conquered, Dr. Eiben changed his medical focus and became a pediatric neurologist. At the time, there were only 32 pediatric neurologists in the country. He was named professor of pediatric neurology at MetroHealth Medical Center. He also served as a member of the initial board of trustees of the Sisters of Charity Health & Human Services (now Sisters of Charity Health System). He continues to stay in contact with Sr. Mary Patricia and other friends at Mt. Augustine and Regina Health Center.
When Dr. Eiben and his wife Annie wanted to donate to Regina Health Center (RHC), they chose to establish a charitable gift annuity. With a charitable gift annuity, their donation helps RHC continue its mission while providing the couple with an additional source of retirement income through annuity payments. When asked why they choose to donate to RHC, Dr. Eiben said, “I am indebted to these Sisters. It is the least I could do for everything they did for me. This is my way of giving back.”
A Loving Wish Fulfilled
Brosnan-Barrett Endowment Established to Further RHC’s Charitable Works
Before Margaret Anne Brosnan passed away in late 2010, she had the foresight and philanthropic spirit to meet with her attorney and other advisors to establish her estate plan. Her plan included the distribution of gifts to various charities upon her death that would benefit beyond her lifetime.
Anne had been a dear friend to many at Regina Health Center (RHC), especially Sr. Catherine Browning. She designated RHC as one of the beneficiaries of her estate. Specifically, she requested that RHC establish an endowment called the Brosnan-Barrett Endowment to be used to further the unique Christian charitable works of the care of the aged, sick and infirm brothers, sisters, priests and others who receive care at RHC.
“Anne’s final request perfectly fit the primary mission of RHC. We were so fortunate to be included in her will and were grateful to accept her gift, which will make a lasting impact on RHC and the care we provide residents,” said RHC Development Director Maureen O’Neill-Laszlo.
The trustee of Anne’s estate, Patricia Mascolo, said that Anne knew what she wanted to support and took great strides to ensure that her final wishes were carried out with care. “She included a provision in her estate documents that the established endowment would be a reminder to others to pray for her father, Patrick J. Brosnan, mother, Mary Barrett Brosnan and Margaret Anne Barrett Brosnan,” said Patricia.