As we continue to navigate the ongoing COVID-19 situation, we are receiving so much love and support from members of the community. We have been writing cards to front line staff, graduating seniors and kids in residential who were recently admitted. Now we want your help with writing cards of encouragement and messages of "you got this" to our children in foster care. We will be sending some summer activity ideas to our kids and would love to include cards from the community! In order to help you in crafting your notes, we wanted to provide a few reminders about our youth.
When drafting your thoughts, it might be helpful to know that youth receiving services at UMFS are hardworking, resilient and strong individuals. At UMFS, we focus on helping children have healthy relationships — with themselves, their families and other peers and adults — while also helping them to discover their strengths. They are tirelessly working on finding healthier ways to cope with past and current experiences and difficulties. We want our kids to know their community cares and are rooting for them every step of the way and these cards will help do just that!
We want your cards to come from the heart and also encourage you to take note of the suggestions below.
1) Rather than specific youth, please address your cards by writing "Hello" or "Dear Champion". When signing the letter, please sign off as "Your Community". Our children in foster care range from youth are 0-18 years old, so the more generic the better!
2)Please do not place your personal contact information or make offers to help--should you have any resources or additional ways to help, please contact Kate Ockerman at [email protected]
3) The cards should focus on hope, encouragement and inspiration. We want to remain mindful of all youth, so please refrain from religious references as there are varying beliefs around this topic. Feel free to add your own art--this is a great acitivity to do with little ones, friends and family!
4) Please mail your cards/letters to the address listed on your sign up page. If you can, please include a blank envelope with each letter written (so we can personlize it to our youth)--no problem if this is not possible. Please place your letters in the mail no later than Tuesday, June 30th. We ask that you do not drop letters off in person to maintain safety and social distancing.
5) After dropping your cards in the mail, it would be most helpful if you send an email to Kate Ockerman ([email protected]). This will allow us to track and distribute the letters all at once!
Thank you again for all of your interest and support. At UMFS, we believe its important to start with strengths always and this initiative is a great way to lift the spirits and strengths of our youth!
8:00am - 4:00pm EDT
UMFS; Attn: Kate Ockerman, 3900 West Broad Street, Richmond VA 23230