GRAND FORKS, ND – In dark times, we all could use a little sunshine.
That’s why Gate City Bank has donated $100,000 to Sunshine Memorial Foundation, a local nonprofit that, through its Sunshine Hospitality Home facility and supporting charitable events, provides a place of comfort, compassion and convenience for patients and their families who must travel for health care.
Founded in 2010, Sunshine Memorial Foundation was established by Van and Dee Larson in memory of their daughter, Shannon “Sunshine” Larson, who had a passion for helping others. Shannon passed away in 2007, at age 31, after a 7-mile hike in Arizona led to dehydration and heat stroke. Her memory lives on through this initiative, which launched with the support of Dakota Medical Foundation.
In June 2017, Sunshine Memorial Foundation also partnered with Altru Health System to start construction for its Sunshine Hospitality Home, which opened in July 2018. Gate City Bank recently completed its final donation installment, which helped make the philanthropic project a reality.
“It’s been an absolute honor to partner with Sunshine Memorial Foundation,” says Becky Mindeman, Gate City Bank Senior Vice President of Retail Banking, who also serves on the nonprofit’s Home Advisory Council. “Gate City Bank exists to create a better way of life for the communities we serve, and it’s been so wonderful to see how this facility has helped families in need.”
Health complications can arise at any time, and when they do, needing to seek medical care far from home can create a financial burden and separate families. Comfortable and homelike, Sunshine Hospitality Home offers an alternative for families who are unable to secure temporary lodging during medical visits. They have a place to sleep, eat, keep their belongings, relax and find peace.
Sunshine Hospitality Home, located at 933 Duke Drive, serves up to 20,000 people each year. Thanks to Gate City Bank and other community partners, the facility features 12 guest rooms, a reception area, dining rooms, laundry access, a patio and sections focused on faith, art, games and wellness. It’s open to all ages and situations, and welcomes families from the Grand Forks area and surrounding region.
“Gate City Bank has been an amazing partner,” says Donovan Larson, Director of Sunshine Memorial Foundation, as well as Shannon’s brother. “You can tell the Bank cares about its communities. My sister is up in heaven and looking down on this project thinking, ‘Wow.’”
For more information on Sunshine Memorial Foundation, please visit SunshineMemorial.org.