Four-year-old Ava Jefferson loves chocolate pudding, can just about spell her name and shows off her goofy side when the cameras are on. She’s also a doting big sister to 9-month-old Brooke.
Taylor and Sarah Jefferson’s bustling family of four could be considered miraculous. After two years of trying to have children, they were told they would not be able to conceive without medical intervention.
They turned to VCU Health for in-vitro fertilization.
Their experience before and during the process led them to seek out ways to help individuals who cannot conceive without medical intervention or those who’ve gone through one unsuccessful round of IVF and cannot afford a second round. In May, the Jeffersons donated to the OB-GYN Development Fund at the VCU School of Medicine.
I imagine if we were in those shoes, and what it would mean to have someone call us and tell us a stranger is helping us pay for it.
These days, the Jeffersons, who together founded a real estate brokerage firm after leaving the health care field, are blessed to be busy working parents.
“The IVF process is emotionally trying,” Sarah said, “not to mention costly.” When their first attempt at IVF failed, the Jeffersons decided to find a way to navigate the process a second time.
In a twist of fate, however, Sarah found out she was pregnant just as they began the second round. While it happened naturally for them, they know many others aren’t as lucky.
“We know so many people who’ve had to go through IVF or who struggle with fertility,” said Taylor, who graduated from the VCU School of Pharmacy.
The Jeffersons reached a point in their careers when they wanted to give back, and they started with holiday children’s toy drives.
“But then we thought – what could we do that’s bigger,” Taylor said. “That’s when our minds went to IVF, and our goal is to do this every year.”
Sarah thinks back to that day when she got the news that the first round of IVF hadn’t worked. She sat on her front porch steps and cried.
“It’s such an emotional ordeal. If you want a baby, you have to pay thousands of dollars and then, even after that, there’s no guarantee that IVF will work,” Sarah said. “I imagine if we were in those shoes, and what it would mean to have someone call us and tell us a stranger is helping us pay for it.”
If you are interested in supporting the OB-GYN Development Fund at the VCU School of Medicine, please contact Nathan Bick, senior director of development in the Office of Medical Philanthropy and Alumni Relations, at 804-827-0387 or email@example.com.