Saturday, June 22, 2024

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Local Voices: Creating a scholarship foundation in memory of my son Jayden

Submitted by Catrina Cantrell, President of the Jayden M. Ross Faith Family Love Scholarship Foundation

Jayden Ross was a bright, caring, loving son/brother that is truly missed by everyone that knew him. He has loving parents: Catrina Cantrell, Ricardo Ross Jr., and three loving older sisters: Rasheya Ross, Tykia Cantrell, and Aaliyah Ross.

My son Jayden Ross was born June 14, 2010, with a bad a congenital heart condition called Tricuspid Artresia/Pulmonary Artresia, and a sensorineural hearing loss. I knew about the condition during pregnancy and was informed of the different surgeries that my son would have to have.

When Jayden was born the first surgery that he had was a BT shunt at the tender age of two days old. The effect that it had on our family was how to cope with the health challenges that Jayden would have. We didn’t learn of his hearing loss until he was 2 months old when he was being discharged from the hospital. At that time, I was in denial due to what the doctors were saying, our family was observing the opposite.

The financial impact that it had on our family was that I was unable to work in the beginning because of the care that Jayden needed. I had a hard time trusting anyone/daycare to care for him and provide the care needed. I was a stay-at-home mom and received help from the government. When I was able to go to work, I only worked minimum hours, and Jayden’s dad had FMLA in place. I understand the hardship of taking care of a child/loved one with health challenges is very demanding and can be overwhelming at times.

Jayden Ross (Photo provided)

I have always advocated for my son and over the last 12 years, I have learned so much on this journey. Jayden did not let his health challenge deter him from being a very energetic boy. Jayden knew his limitations and when he got tired, he stopped. My son showed us how to be strong and to keep pushing.

On November 4, 2022, when my son transitioned to be with the Lord, I was devastated. During the holiday season it was hard not having his presence with us. I was sitting and thinking, and I said I want to start a scholarship in my son’s name. I am determined to keep my son’s name alive. I discussed my daughters, kids’ father, family and friends and they all said it was a good idea. In 2023 a committee was formed, and we started planning.

The name of our foundation is “The Jayden M. Ross Faith Family Love Scholarship.”

Our foundation’s mission is to help a family that has a child/children with health challenges cover some of the cost that is associated with the care. We understand insurances don’t cover all medications, travel expenses for second/third opinions, lodging, etc. We believe in being a part of the deaf and hard of hearing community as well.

If you would like to be involved or learn more about the foundation, we have a Facebook page: The Jayden M. Ross Faith Family Love Scholarship, and also our website is www.heartofgold614.com, so please visit and subscribe.

For the year 2023, we hosted a game night (Jayden loved to play games), just being around family and friends and having a good time. We also held a fundraiser selling fish dinners, and gifted Jayden’s class at ECHO (DHH) program and teachers with holiday gifts. We will be having an upcoming fundraiser in the summer. We are also planning to have a health fair.

We have not started accepting essays/videos for the scholarship. We are looking forward to having a formal dinner in 2025. More details are coming soon in regard to the criteria.

If you would like to make a monetary donation:
Zelle info is: (708) 940-8261 and it is under The Jayden M. Ross Faith Family Love Scholarship
Venmo: @Jayden_Ross614

**When monetary donations are made and you would like a receipt, we can provide. **
**WE ARE A NON FOR-PROFIT ORGANIZATION (501c3) **

Local Voices
Local Voiceshttps://thelansingjournal.com/category/lansing-voices/
Local Voices is The Lansing Journal's version of “Letters to the Editor.” The opinions posted here are those of the writers, and posting them does not indicate endorsement by The Lansing Journal. We welcome input from fellow residents who have thoughtful things to say about topics that are important to our community. Submissions may be sent to [email protected] with “Voices” in the subject line.

1 COMMENT

  1. Jayden was a student of mine. A sweet adorable child. His mother and foundation do good work for other kids in need

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