Hemispherectomy Foundation – Nonprofit of the Month

The Hemispherectomy Foundation was founded to offer support and information, to raise money for camps, scholarships and to other financial needs of families who are touched by a child having a hemispherectomy or similar surgery. Care packages are sent to children in the hospital recovering from this surgery and information about this group is being collected for pediatric neurologists and neurosurgeons all over the US.

Hemispherectomy Foundation

What is a Hemispherectomy?

A Hemispherectomy is a “surgical procedure in which half of the brain is removed or disconnected”. Because this surgery is severe, it is done often as a last resort – when drugs can’t control seizure disorders coming from one side of the brain, if a lesion is found in one hemisphere of the brain, for severe viral or bacterial infections that have damaged the brain, for tumors and for children with tuberous sclerosis. There are other neurological disorders that can affect one side of the brain and may lead to the need for a hemispherectomy. You can learn about the surgery and the need for it from the Facts page on the Hemispherectomy Foundation website.

When this surgery is done on children up to the age of 14, they have a better chance than older children and adults of gaining back the functions lost from the side of the brain that is removed. There is some paralysis on one side of the body and the risk other health problems. But, many children go on to live long lives and achieve remarkable things.

Support for Families

The Hemispherectomy Foundation provides an online support group and volunteers by phone so families can connect with one another before, during and after surgery. Information about specialists in your area and an up to date newsletter are also provided to members. There is no charge for any of these services. You do have to register since the group communicates about delicate and private matters.


One of the missions of the foundation is to help families financially. What better way to do that then with scholarships? The Winner’s Circle proudly promotes winners of their yearly $1000 scholarship recipients. This gives parents hope for their young children and encourages children who have undergone the surgery as well.

How to Help

Monetary donations are accepted and are tax deductible. Donations of small items, like stuffed animals, coloring books and gift cards are welcomed for care packages and for families in need. You can also volunteer to raise awareness, to help with fundraising or form a local support group.


Thanks to Dwan, from MommaDJane.com, whose daughter Gabby had a hemispherectomy in  2007. Dwan  lead me to the foundation’s website. Gabby received a care package when she was in the hospital for a related surgery. This post is dedicated to Gabby.

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Connie Roberts

Professional Blogger
Living in the Tampa Bay area, I'm lucky enough to see beautiful sunsets almost every day. Although life can be difficult at times, focusing on the positive and being with my family is what gets me through.

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  1. I hadn’t heard about a hemispherectomy until I read about Dwan’s daughter. What an amazing (but frightening) procedure. Good for you for highlighting this organization.
    Jessica wrote this fabulous post..What Would You Want Your Younger Self to Know if You Graduated Today?My Profile

  2. WOW! Thank you for sharing this Connie! I had never heard of that procedure and especially didn’t know this non profit existed. I am glad it does, I cannot imagine the fear those mothers experience.
    Annie wrote this fabulous post..Meet Brandy!My Profile

  3. Oh my. I had never heard of this (procedure or organization). I had no idea that it could even be done. I’m so glad this foundation exists. Thank you for sharing it.
    Lindsay wrote this fabulous post..Family Caregivers Book GiveawayMy Profile

  4. Great info Connie. I’ve never heard of this foundation before.
    Cindy wrote this fabulous post..SeaWorld Does Away with Plastic BagsMy Profile

  5. You always find such great charities.

  6. Thanks for sharing this cause. I learn so much from your blog.
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  7. wow. that sounds like a stressful surgery.
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  8. Houston Siding says:

    I’ve never heard of this procedure until I happen to read this article. Thank for the information. I hope you continue posting more articles like this.

    Houston Siding

  9. I can sense that this kind of operation is a very crucial one. Thank you for the additional information.

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  10. The link to this post just popped up in my notifications. (a little late I’d say, LOL) Thanks so much for the feature and for dedicating the post to Gabby. I never knew someone could live with half a brain until we were faced with the life-threatening surgery. It’s amazing what modern medicine can do and this foundation really does serve a great cause.

    Thanks again!
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