In 2007, the Bagby family experienced the tragedy of their lives. Their daughter Savannah began having seizures that wouldn’t stop. Her doctors were unsure of the diagnosis and recommended inducing a medical coma to prevent brain damage. Treating her as best they could, her doctors used multiple different medications in an attempt to bring the ‘mystery illness’ under control. Instead, the heartbreaking disease took their daughter and shook the family.
Out of tragedy, the Bagby’s created a beacon of healing by starting Savannah’s Hope. The Des Moines, Iowa organization serves families of children with rare diseases and provides information and education for the community.
“We wanted to prevent other families from going through what we went through, ” said Willie Bagby, Savannah’s mother. “Our daughter was a mystery patient. We want to prevent other children’s diseases from being a mystery.”
Mrs. Bagby says her hope in God is what inspired the nonprofit organization and continues to help her family cope.
“Savannah’s Hope helps everyone regardless of religion, but it was God that really started this and I’ll never forget that,” she says. “We pray that we can help as many families as possible with financial grants, encouragement and a whole lot more.”
More information about Savannah’s Hope is available at their website. The organization accepts financial contributions, donations of items for their Savannah Shares program and donations of gift cards to support the travel needs of families seeking treatment for their children outside Iowa state. Applications for grant assistance are available online and by contacting the Savannah’s Hope office directly.