The gift resulted from a large class action lawsuit settlement achieved by the Santa Barbara-based law firm of Foley Bezek Behle & Curtis, LLP. Gignac explained that, “There was a residual sum of money that could not be distributed to class members who had relocated without a forwarding address or simply never cashed the settlement checks that were provided to them.”
Gignac petitioned the Court for permission to donate the residual settlement funds to two Santa Barbara-based non-profit organizations.
Gignac continues, “I selected Dream Foundation as one of the two non-profits because of my and my family’s more than twenty years of being involved with Dream Foundation. As a long-term donor and a former Board member, I know Dream Foundation to be an organization that brings joy to so many people’s lives when they most need it.”
Dream Foundation fulfills the final Dreams of terminally-ill adults and their families across the nation.
The sum total of the final gift was a surprise to Gignac. He says, “It was substantially more than I had envisioned. However, it made me all the more happy that I was able to arrange the gift because I realized just how impactful it would be.”
Dream Foundation receives applications for final Dreams from across the nation, fulfilling thousands every year. The remarkable gift will make more than 100 Dreams come true over the coming months and Gignac has requested that the gift be used to sponsor Dreams for Dream recipients with children at home.
Many of the applications to Dream Foundation where there are children in the home place those children firmly at the center of Dreams, with requests for vacations or trips to theme parks.
Gignac says, “Those Dreams tend to be more expensive due to the number of family members involved, and it is important to me that those children have the opportunity to participate in the final Dream.”
Dream Foundation’s CEO, Kisa Heyer, says, “Almost one in three of the people whose Dreams we fulfill have young children living in the home. Dream recipients want to leave children with memories that will sustain them for years to come. Dream Foundation has been making final Dreams come true for 25 years, and we hear from those children sometimes years later as the memories of those Dreams live on for them into their adulthood.”
Heyer, who was told the full amount of the gift just one week before the charity’s annual fundraising event, was almost left speechles. She says, “Once I began to calculate just how many lives this incredible gift would positively affect, I could barely contain myself.”
“Knowing that the gift will be used to fulfill more than 100 Dreams that include children who are still in the home of their parent is the fulfillment of a dream for me,” says Gignac.
About Dream Foundation:
Dream Foundation, the only national dream-granting organization for terminally-ill adults, fulfills final Dreams that provide inspiration, comfort and closure at the end of life. With the support of a nationwide network of volunteers, hospices, health care organizations and committed donors, Dream Foundation has given life to more than 32,000 final Dreams over the last twenty-five years. Dream Foundation receives no state or federal funding—we rely solely on private donations. To support our mission please visit DreamFoundation.org/donate.