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Jim and Yvonne French

We first heard about Craig when we were living in southwestern Colorado following our retirements. The son of a friend sustained a traumatic brain injury and rehabilitated at Craig Hospital. Another acquaintance was also helped by Craig following an injury.

After our careers in law enforcement and the legal field, we were slightly cynical and skeptical about humanity—and even many nonprofit organizations. But we knew that individuals who sustained catastrophic injuries like these needed our help. We came to Englewood, took a tour of Craig, and decided to become quarterly donors.

Over the years we have given to the areas of greatest need at Craig, as well as to the Patient Assistance Funds and the capital construction project. We currently support Craig’s Community Reintegration program, which helps graduates return to their work, schools or communities.

We have also joined the Frank Craig Society and have included Craig in our estate plans. We don’t have a close family, so we like knowing that our assets will go to an organization we feel comfortable with. We can see the results of our philanthropy in the stories of the people who are helped. We feel good about our giving and knowing that we can do a little something to help alleviate the pain of people who are going through tough situations.

If you’re ever driving through Larimer County and you catch a glimpse of a car proudly displaying Craig license plates … be sure to give us a wave!

Community Reintegration

For more than 30 years, Craig’s Community Reintegration (CR) program has helped Craig graduates return to work or other meaningful activities through an innovative program that gives individuals the skills and opportunity to become economically self-sufficient again.

The CR program works toward reintegrating patients back into their former work environment whenever possible. Returning to work is most successful when people can retain the job they held prior to the injury, capitalizing on pre-injury success and the social relationships and support from their prior employer.

Often, inpatient program participants will work in nonclinical departments throughout the hospital in areas closely relating to their own work history. This gives the patients an opportunity to demonstrate their ability to perform work-related tasks and assess equipment and accommodation needs.

Once the patient has returned to work, the CR staff visits him or her at the worksite weekly or as needed to ensure things are going well; the visits slowly taper off as the patient and employer begin to feel more comfortable.

When patients cannot return to a job after injury or if they were previously unemployed, the CR team helps them explore their interests and pursue educational opportunities.

Craig is one of only a few rehabilitation hospitals that offer a program like Community Reintegration. This valuable program is rarely covered by insurance and relies on donations from individuals like Jim and Yvonne to serve patients.

Most Craig patients do not have insurance coverage for vocational services. The Community Reintegration program served 260 patients in Calendar Year 2017.