Ben and Savannah Sargent with their four children.

Employee Crisis Fund helps Sanford employees following house fire

October 23, 2019

Story by Ben Sargent, financial analyst at Sanford Bismarck. His family benefited from the Employee Crisis Fund following a devastating house fire.

My wife, Savannah Sargent, and I are both employees at Sanford Bismarck. The night of May 4, Savannah, a registered nurse, was working a night shift in the intensive care unit, and I was at home with our four young children.

While on break, she noticed a Facebook live stream of a house fire near the area where we live. It looked like our house, but she thought to herself that there is no way it could be ours.

After watching the video a couple of times and not being able to reach me, shock and panic set in. She called the Bismarck Police Department. They confirmed the house on fire was ours but also told her the kids and I were OK and made it out without any injuries.

Our lives were turned completely upside down that night. Our home was no longer livable and many of our belongings were destroyed. We were left with the clothes on our backs and not much else. This is where the Employee Crisis Fund came into our lives and made such an impact.

It made the financial burden more bearable as we made countless trips to the store to purchase items to care for our family. It allowed us to focus on our family first and alleviate some of the stress during such a challenging time.

You never imagine something like this will happen to you or your family, but the Employee Crisis Fund provides a safety net if it ever does. It makes you realize that you are not alone in your time of crisis.

Not only did we benefit from the Employee Crisis Fund, but so many people reached out to us directly just to check in and see if we needed anything. We have never been prouder to say we work at Sanford.

On Sept. 8, we moved back home. The past four months were trialing on so many levels, but this journey would have been so much more challenging without all the positivity and support we’ve received from everyone at Sanford.

Thank you so much to everyone who supports this fund! We are forever grateful and want you to know how much it helped our family get through this tragic event. We would like to send a special thank you to administration, ICU, finance, marketing, human resources, Foundation, nurse analyst and reimbursement departments for the outpouring of support. Thank you!


Are you a Sanford Health employee?

With support from generous donors, Sanford employees receive up to $1,000 each year to help recover from sudden, emergent and catastrophic financial difficulties. Gifts help:

  • Support families following a traumatic event such as a house fire, car accident, sudden death in the family, critical illness or natural disaster.
  • Provide travel support including transportation, lodging and meals.
  • Assist with emergent medical costs not covered by insurance.

Sanford Health employees can support this crucial resource at sanfordhealthfoundation.org/employeecrisis.