Keeping Dreams Alive

Atlas Helps St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway Become A Reality

Michael Calendrillo, Writer
Reading Time: 4 minutes
Share Now:

Since 1962, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital has devoted itself to finding cures and treating sick children. Founded by stage-and-screen comedian Danny Thomas and two friends on the premise that “no child should die in the dawn of life,” discoveries at St. Jude’s have changed the way doctors treat children with childhood cancers and other life-threatening illnesses.

The hospital’s efforts have been nothing short of amazing. The survival rate for the most commonly found cancer in children, acute lymphoblastic leukemia, has increased from a mere 4 percent in 1962 to 94 percent today. Overall, the survival rate for children with cancer has climbed to 80 percent. St. Jude conducts more clinical trials for cancer than any other children’s hospital and has the best survival rates for the most aggressive forms of childhood cancer.

Dream Home Giveaway Fundraiser

As a nonprofit organization, St. Jude’s depends on events such as the Dream Home Giveaway for ongoing financial support. Held in 30 locations around the nation in 2017, the Dream Home Giveaway raffles off a new home built by contractors who donate time and materials to the project. Tickets are $100 each and only a limited number are sold in each city. All proceeds go to St. Jude.

For the second consecutive year, the builder of the Dream Home, Nies Homes, partnered with St. Jude to bring the successful fundraiser to Wichita, KS. After selling more than 6,500 tickets in just six days for a total donation of $650,000 in 2016, Nies Homes was eager to do its part once again.

On May 17, 2017, the live giveaway of the Dream Home took place at Lookout Pointe in the Oaks Community of Derby, KS. The new goal was to sell 8,500 tickets at $100 apiece for a total donation of $850,000.

The Wichita Dream Home includes:

  • 3,814 total finished square feet
  • 4 bedrooms
  • 4.5 baths
  • Bonus room above garage
  • “Man cave” in garage
  • Wine room in basement
  • Craft room in basement

Bella’s Story Of Survival

Bella Bush, the face of Wichita’s St. Jude Dream Home, is a true example of determination and positivity in the face of almost insurmountable odds. At 18 months old, Bella was diagnosed with a tumor on her optic nerve. She had surgery, but doctors were only able to remove a quarter of the tumor because of its location. Had doctors removed the entire tumor, she would have been blind. Bella soon began her first round of chemotherapy, which lasted a full year, sending her cancer into remission.

Unfortunately, in 2016, Bella’s family learned her tumor had returned. Just as Nies was breaking ground on Kansas' first St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway house, Bella began treatment again and, despite several different types of chemo, the tumor continues to grow.

Curtis Cowgill, vice president of Nies Homes, is inspired by Bella’s determination.

“When you think about St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and all it does to provide comfort to families and children facing the battle of their lives, it touches something in all of us,” Cowgill said.

“We are honored to be a part of the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway builder team. This home-building experience is a community effort. And it's humbling to build a home together knowing the result will help ensure that the work of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital can continue, bringing smiles and care to its young patients and families while finding cures to end childhood cancer.”

Atlas Roofing Donation

Dan Phillips, owner of R. Phillips Roofing Inc., has served the Wichita community for 36 years. After working on the first St. Jude Dream Home, Phillips was eager to participate again.

“The St. Jude Dream Home represents proof that good people can come together for something that is much bigger than any one of us,” Phillips said. “I made sure to get four of my best guys to lay down the roof in just over a day. We’re all very proud of the work we accomplished.”

For ultimate durability, R. Phillips Roofing installed Atlas Summit® 60 synthetic underlayment, followed by GlassMaster® Performance Fiberglass Shingles. The roof was then capped with 50 squares of Pro-Cut® Hip and Ridge shingles.

A Winning Combination

Atlas Roofing is proud to be part of St. Jude’s mission and congratulates Nies Homes and R. Phillips Roofing for their support of the St. Jude Dream Home. The quality roofing materials will help the home protect its occupants and also be a symbol of hope for children afflicted by serious illnesses.

For information on the 2018 St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway, visit