We’ve all heard the saying, “it takes a village to raise a child” and over here at Choices that couldn’t be more true. Well, for us it goes a little like “it takes a village to support a non-profit” or “it takes a village to support homeless and at-risk youth.” The sentiment is the same though!
A variety of community partners support our work – whether it’s the Salvation Army Men’s Group cooking Christmas Dinner for young people and their families, or the Community Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador supporting our Jumpstart program -- it takes a whole lot more than just us to ensure that young people in St. John’s are enable to make healthy choices that are right for them.
This spring we welcomed a couple of new community partners in to the Choices for Youth family with family friendly fun events (thanks McHappy Day!), handyman dollars that go a long way (thanks Home Depot!), and young mom support (thanks Tiller Engineering!). Their willingness to support Choices impacts the lives of hundreds of young people, and is a testament to what it means to be a part of a community.
On May 5th we celebrated McHappy Day with the Bennett Group at their St. John’s McDonald’s locations. With their staff and a crew of enthusiastic volunteers we had a blast chatting with customers, handing out cake, and selling raffle tickets. Thanks to everyone who dropped down – we know our goofy smiles rivaled Ronald’s but we just couldn’t help ourselves!
The Orange Door Project took place at your friendly St. John’s Home Depot from May to July as an initiative to raise awareness about, and funds for, Choices for Youth. We were live on location May 20th to make the first purchase of the campaign for our Train for Trades program, the beneficiary of the Home Depot Foundation Orange Door Project Grants. As a housing-first organization, working with young people who are learning skills to improve and build other people’s homes is a unique and rewarding experience. Support from Home Depot makes that possible, and so much more, possible.
Finally, in June Tiller Engineering joined us as a partner in supporting our outreach and youth engagement work! After hearing about us in the community, and with an interest in helping families lead happy, healthy lives, Tiller was excited to learn more about our Momma Moments Program and the drop in services we offer. Our Outreach and Youth Engagement center served over 1,000 young people last year, and there are currently 37 moms and 51 kids meeting weekly at Momma Moments. Tiller Engineering’s generous support ensures that each one of those young people, moms, and children have a safe space to visit with friendly, informed staff to empower them. Thank you Tiller for sharing in our belief in the bright futures of young people!