Halo House’s mission is to help save the lives of cancer patients battling leukemia, lymphoma, and myeloma by offering them access to clean, temporary, and affordable housing so that they can pursue treatment at the Texas Medical Center (TMC). We do this by providing fully furnished apartments for $25 a day to people who must often stay for months of treatment.
In addition to receiving a cancer diagnosis and having to come to a new city to receive treatment, paying for a place to live while in Houston and rent or a mortgage back home can be emotionally and financially devastating. While these out-of-town families are in Houston, they usually need to stay in hotels or short term, fully furnished apartments. The cost for this housing can be crippling, and most health insurance does not cover housing.
Halo House’s vision is that one day no one battling a blood cancer will have to worry about where they are going to live during treatment in Houston, or going bankrupt while paying for living, eating, and parking expenses here, and their rent or mortgage back home. Our goal is to help alleviate medically caused bankruptcies by mitigating a large portion of the financial burden associated with the cost of housing during a patient’s stay in Houston. We believe that by providing a “home away from home” and easing the family’s financial burden, their focus can be directed toward healing.
Halo House is not just a building; it is a home – a place that shelters, protects, and nurtures its occupants.
The inspiration for Halo House was Derek, a loving husband and father of two young children who was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma at the age of 26. After unsuccessful treatment in 2009 in their native Florida, Derek and his wife, Emily, came to see Dr. Nathan Fowler at MD Anderson. Derek’s inability to work during the treatment, combined with frequent lengthy visits to Houston, quickly depleted the family’s savings. He tearfully admitted to Dr. Fowler that he was not afraid to face death, but that his true fear was the thought of leaving his family penniless if he did not survive.
Halo House Foundation was founded in 2009 by Dr. Nathan Fowler, an oncologist at MD Anderson Cancer Center, Kathleen Fowler, Dr. Fowler’s mother and a former business owner, and other friends and colleagues. After receiving its 501(c)(3) status in 2010, Halo House hosted a backyard “fiesta” as its 1st fundraiser and raised over $13,000. In 2011, Halo House welcomed families into their first two apartments and by 2016, had ten rental apartments and one condo. After a two-year, 12-million-dollar capital campaign, construction began on a new 42,000 square foot facility and in May 2019, Halo House opened with 33 fully furnished apartments. By the end of 2020, we will have provided over 40,000 days of housing to over 600 families. Halo House is the largest housing facility for blood cancer patients in the USA and will provide housing for decades to come, or until a cure for cancer is found.