Happy New Year family! We're off to a great start as we reflect on what we have accomplished and look forward to a bright new future with WIN Family Services! Read more about our holiday parties, join us in thanking all of those who helped out tremendously during the holiday season, and a special spotlight on a former foster child.
Read on for more about WIN Family Services!
We are proud to announce that one of our foster youth has been officially adopted by Joyce and Sean Richardson. Our youth was placed with Mr. and Mrs. Richardson since February 2009 and has been with the loving family ever since. We are so excited for this special child’s future and wish the growing family all the best wishes!
An Act of Kindness
The holiday spirit is a beautiful thing. At Serenity Helping Hands Therapy Center, two clients decided to make a special donation in honor of their late son/brother for one of our deserving foster youth. In just the last year this youth was able to raise his GPA from a 2.5 to a 3.17, working on himself and improving tremendously in various aspects of his life. He is doing extremely well with his currently foster family and is working toward a career in clothing design. With extreme generosity, Jodi and Kenayah provided a very special Christmas for this hardworking young man, purchasing a new PS4 with a Call of Duty 4, clothing and giftcards. The holidays have proven to be an emotional time for both Jodi and Kenayah who lost their loved one just in July. However, we are truly grateful that they channeled their hearts to encourage and strengthen a young man with a bright future.
A special thank you goes to one of our devoted foster parents, Keara Hayes, for her company’s generous contribution to our holiday extravaganza. Apex Payroll donated $500 worth in ChickfilA, Forever 21, and Foot Locker gift cards. Our teenagers were absolutely ecstatic to receive the cards to stores and restaurants that they love and visit frequently. We are grateful to Ms. Hayes and the Apex Payroll family for their tremendous generosity this past holiday season .
A Special Thank You!
As the holiday season comes to a close, we are reminded of just how blessed we are as an organization. With four holiday parties under our belt, we are glad to have seen the smiles and hear the laughter of all those who attended and celebrated the reason for the season. No holiday soiree would be complete without food, entertainment, and presents. But WIN couldn’t do it themselves! A huge thank you goes to everyone who made a donation to make these extravaganzas possible – Refreshing Life Ministries, Kingdom Life International, Packages for Success, Apex Payroll, and HOF City Sports. We are also truly grateful to all those that made monetary donations to ensure that our clients had a wonderful holiday. Every family is blessed to get the opportunity to spend the holidays together and WIN is no different. We are so glad we were able to celebrate the season with everyone we hold near and dear to our hearts. As we close out another eventful and successful year, we eagerly await what 2016 has in store for us. Thank you all for your support!
Ms. Nelson first came into our program in 2012 and stayed with us until she aged out in 2015. During her time with WIN Family Services, she developed a number of strong relationships that will last her a lifetime. “My experience with WIN was amazing,” she says, “I still talk to some of my workers today and call them aunts and uncles. Even one of my foster parents’ friends – Ms. Guthrie – has stuck by me through everything. I call her Aunt Donna!” Like many youth in care, Ms. Nelson struggled with not knowing her birth parents and not believing in herself. To this day, she feels deeply connected to those kids in care and knows all too well what their struggles are day in and day out. Her experiences have very much shaped the person she is today, “Foster care has affected my life decisions because I know not to give up even when people say I can't do it.”
Ms. Nelson has started a blog that lends insight to the foster care experience. The blog is intended to reach other youth in similar situations and offer words of encouragement and love, “I want to tell all of the foster kids out there know that if I can do it, so can you. You are not alone. There are people out there who do care and are willing to help you. Don't give up on yourself because you are worth fighting for.” The blog is called ‘Victoria’s Journal” and can be accessed at www.theannaforlenzafoundation.com.
Ms. Nelson plans on becoming a social worker and would love to come and speak to foster youth about her story.