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JW House provides a guest house on the Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara Medical Center campus where families are able to stay overnight while their family member is undergoing treatment.
JW House began in 2004 as the dream of young Belgian, Jan-Willem (JW) Knapen, a boy who survived leukemia as a toddler only to be diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer as a teenager. Throughout his numerous surgeries, chemotherapy treatments, and radiation sessions, JW found himself separated from his brother, sisters, and parents too often. He wished, along with his beloved doctor, Dr. Wong, that there could be a place where families could stay near their loved ones during long hospitalizations and he envisioned building such a place near his hospital at Kaiser Permanente in Santa Clara, California. He wanted this place to be like a "home away from home" - where families could come together to talk, eat, and support one another during difficult times.
It has been over 4 years since JW first began dreaming of his special place for families and though JW passed away in 2005, the dream has become a reality. Land for the house has been provided by Kaiser Permanente. Over to 2.3 million dollars have been raised to construct and furnish JW House. Grand opening ceremonies were held in October of 2008 and our first guests stayed in the house in December 2008.
Social workers refer families to JW House, with priority going to pediatric families.