CLINTON TWP. – An organization that helps cancer patients is seeking to expand into Wayne County.
Forest City-based Portable Playhouse is in the midst of a fundraising campaign to benefit Lonakana Retreat, which is looking to purchase a 64-acre rural property outside Waymart to serve women and children battling cancer.
The retreat will provide a peaceful environment to promote healing and brighten spirits at no cost to guests, said Portable Playhouse CEO Maryann Corey.
A GoFundMe account has been set up as the organization is looking to raise $960,000 to purchase the property off the Belmont Turnpike.
The organization plans to have three furnished, handicapped-accessible guest cottages that could sleep four to eight guests.
Corporate donations and sponsorships will pay for operational costs.
The retreat will be managed by a team of professional caregivers and volunteers. It will offer guests the chance to rest, relax and forget about their illness, Corey said.
Activities will include yoga, meditation, pottery and jewelry design, and the facility also will have an art center.
The retreat will also have a calender of events that will allow guests opportunities to visit attractions in the area.
The majority of the retreat's services will be for women, but there will be designated weekends customized for terminally-ill children and their families.
“The need for this is so great,” Corey said.
She noted that part of Portable Playhouse's property on Main Street in Forest City serves women fighting cancer, giving them a place to spend quality time with family and friends.
But the need is so great they've had to turn people away, she said, noting the importance of the Wayne County project.
Portable Playhouse and its volunteers has worked with 22 hospitals in the U.S. to provide art therapy for women and children.
“We've been working with children for years,” Corey said.