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Saint Michael's Foundation

Funding Priorities

Saint Michael’s Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Ascension Saint Michael’s Hospital and Ascension.

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Greatest Need

The Greatest Need Fund provides unrestricted support for the programs and service that improve the quality of health care services for the patients and families served by Ascension Saint Michael's Hospital and Ascension. The use of these funds is based on the discretion of Saint Michael's Foundation's Board of Directors.

Breast Care Center Fund

Gifts to this fund will be used to provide support to patients, programs and initiatives of the Breast Care Center at Ascension Saint Michael's Hospital.

Cardiac Rehabilitation Fund

Gifts to this fund are restricted for cardio-pulmonary programs, services and initiates within Ascension Saint Michael's Hospital and Ascension.

Circle of Hope Endowment Fund

These funds, raised by the Living With Cancer Support Group’s Circle of Hope bracelet sales, are to be used to enhance the quality of life and provide education and support for the members of the Living with Cancer support group.

Community Leadership Celebration Fund

This fund serves as a pass-through account for all sponsorship, ticket sales and gifts received during the Community Leadership Celebration. Net proceeds from this event are traditionally transferred to the Greatest Need Fund.

Edward J. Okray Endowment Fund

The endowment fund, started in 2001 by Joseph J. Okray on behalf of Edward J. Okray, was established to have its interest used to benefit the greatest need locally, though scholarships, support groups and community education.

Gala for Giving Fund

This fund serves as a pass-through account for all sponsorship, ticket sales and auction purchases made during the Gala for Giving. Net proceeds from this event are traditionally split between the Greatest Need Fund and the fund that was highlighted during the Gala.

Hansen Family Memorial Endowment Fund

Interest earnings from the Hansen Family Memorial Endowment Fund are restricted for cancer services initiatives, which touch the lives of patients dealing with cancer. This endowment was started in 2005 by Stephen and Sue Hansen, and Jay and Linda Cook.

Health Literacy

This fund supports healthy literacy initiatives in our community as well as the Literacy for Little Ones program.

Healthy Patients, Healthy Weight Fund

This fund supports programs, initiatives and services that address juvenile and adult diabetes as well as obesity.

Keith M. Worzalla Memorial Endowment


The Keith M. Worzalla Memorial Endowment was established in memory of Keith Worzalla with earnings applied to Saint Michael’s Community Care Program.

Ascension Behavioral Health Fund

The Ascension Behavioral Health Fund supports the various programs, services and initiatives within Ascension Behavioral Health. This includes, but is not limited to, the Mental Health Navigator Program, Cable Gun Lock Program and mental health speakers.

Ascension Dental Center – Operations Fund

Gifts to the Ascension Dental Center – Operations Fund are used to purchase new equipment for the Ascension Dental Center's immediate needs and subsidize operational or financial losses.

Ascension Dental Center – Endowment Fund

Gifts to the Ascension Dental Center – Endowment Fund help to ensure that the center's future needs are met. All gifts help grow the endowment which provides annual earnings to the organization and supports the Ascension Dental Center's goal to become self-sufficient.

Ascension Home Care Hospice Services - Operations Fund

Ascension Home Care does not deny hospice services to anyone based on an inability to pay. Gifts to the Ascension Hospice Services Operations Fund at Saint Michael's Foundation are used to subsidize the cost of hospice care for any patient not able to afford the service. Gifts to this fund may also be used for training/education of staff and/or volunteers for Portage County.

Ascension Home Care Hospice Services – Endowment Fund


Gifts to the Ascension Home Care Hospice Services – Endowment Fund help to ensure that the program’s future needs are met. All gifts help grow the endowment which provides annual earnings to the organization and supports the goal to become self-sufficient.

Ministry LifeDirect

This fund helps subsidize the cost of Ministry LifeDirect (emergency response services) for any person not able to pay the full monthly amount. In addition, money from this fund may be allocated to help purchase additional emergency response equipment as the need arises.

Oncology Fund 

The Oncology Fund supports a variety of oncology-related activities, initiatives and programs. This includes, but is not limited to, support groups, hat and wig purchases, gas cards for oncology patient, and other programs and services.

Patient Services Fund

The Patient Services Fund at Saint Michael's Foundation supports the various programs, services and initiatives within the 5-East, 2-East, ICU and Emergency departments at Ascension Saint Michael's Hospital and Ascension. The Medication Assistance Program is also supported by this fund.

Project Embrace™ Fund

The Project Embrace™ fund supports the Project Embrace™ program, which provides fleece blankets to oncology patients while they are undergoing treatment for chemotherapy or radiation. Patients are offered a navy blue or raspberry colored blanket with the Project Embrace Trillium flower logo printed on the corner of the blanket.

Richard A. Eckberg Memorial Scholarship Endowment

Richard A. Eckberg Memorial Scholarship was established in 1998 by the family of Dr. Richard A. Eckberg, a highly respected surgeon who served on the Ascension Saint Michael’s Hospital staff for 22 years. The endowment will award one $1,000 post-secondary education scholarship each year to a student enrolled in a health care program.

Roberta Swift Memorial Endowment

The Roberta Swift Memorial Fund will provide grants to Ascension Health Care employees who attend or participate in educational opportunities that will enhance the employee's ability to train, teach or develop colleagues and/or to develop a specific Ascension Health Care patient or customer population.

Robert Weaver Memorial Scholarship Endowment

The Robert Weaver Memorial Scholarship Endowment provides one $1,000 scholarship annually to an employee of Saint Michael’s Hospital or Ascension. This endowment was established by the family of Dr. Robert Weaver, a former UWSP Biochemistry professor.

Sleep Apnea & Sleep Diagnostic Fund

Gifts to this fund are restricted for programs, services and initiatives that support patients with sleep disorders.

Spiritual Services Fund

These dollars are restricted to the uses related to the Spiritual Services Department and outreach. They may also be used for sacred artwork or spiritual items in our facilities.

Vetter Family Alzheimer's Endowment Fund

The Vetter Family Alzheimer's Endowment Fund will provide caregiver respite assistance to local caregivers who are unable to afford respite care. The fund will help to cover the costs of Alzheimer-specific adult day programs, in-home assistance, meal delivery and visiting nurse assistance.

Women & Babies Fund

Gifts to this fund are restricted for programs, services and initiatives that support the Women & Infant Center and the Pediatric Unit at Ascension Saint Michael's Hospital and Ascension Medical Group.