Article date: October 21, 2013
By Stacy Simon
Extended Stay America is partnering with the American Cancer Society to provide 10,000 free nights and 10,000 discounted nights in its hotels to cancer patients who must travel to another city to receive treatment. The donation will expand the Society’s Guest Room program, which offers free and discounted rooms to patients and caregivers, offsetting costs associated with living away from home.
The hotel rooms will be available starting November 1 in Atlanta, Boston, and Houston, and will be rolled out to other cities beginning in early 2014. In all, Extended Stay America will offer 10,000 free rooms to cancer patients and another 10,000 rooms at a discounted rate of $12 per night at 684 locations in the US. Cancer patients and their caregivers can request rooms by calling the American Cancer Society at 1-800-227-2345.
“This partnership comes at an important time for the American Cancer Society,” said Kristen Solt, vice president, Hope Lodge Network, “because as the delivery of cancer care continues to change, patients have more treatment options and their best chance for successful treatment may be in another city. Extended Stay America is giving more lodging options to patients who need to travel to another city for treatment.”
In addition to the hotel Guest Room Program, the American Cancer Society operates 31 Hope Lodge facilities in 22 states. These lodges provide a home away from home during treatment. In 2012, Hope Lodge provided more than 260,000 nights of free lodging to cancer patients and their caregivers, saving them an estimated $26 million in hotel costs. The large donation of rooms from Extended Stay America is expected to ease the waiting lists at Hope Lodge so patients won’t have to delay treatment..
“Extended Stay America is committed to giving back to the many communities in which we operate, and one important way to accomplish this is by taking care of those who seek a better future for themselves and their families,” said Jim Donald, chief executive officer at Extended Stay America. “With cancer impacting everyone’s life in some way, we’re proud to partner with the American Cancer Society to provide the key to hope for patients battling cancer so they can focus on their fight.”
According to Solt, Extended Stay America guest rooms will work especially well as a complement to Hope Lodges, because they come equipped with a full kitchen and access to laundry facilities, making them more like home and more like Hope Lodges.
“When you are sick with cancer and taking treatments, your time should be spent during the many things you need to do to get well such as taking your medication, exercise, proper dieting, radiation treatment and meditation and staying focused on the goal of getting well,” said prostate cancer survivor Jimmie Herndon. “The last thing you need to do is worry about lodging, bills, etc.”
In addition to donating the hotel rooms, Extended Stay America has also committed to becoming a National Corporate Team Partner for Relay For Life, the Society’s annual event held in communities across the country and the world to celebrate cancer survivors and remember those who have been lost to the disease, as well as raise funds for cancer research and programs. Hotel employees also volunteered resources and raised funds for the Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walks this year. And throughout National Breast Cancer Awareness month in October, the hotel is holding a promotion during which hotel guests can donate $5 and receive a pink room-key card, benefitting Society research.
For more information about the Hope Lodge or Extended Stay America programs, call the American Cancer Society at 1-800-227-2345.