Saluting our heroes…foster parents

Sharon Pierce is the former president and CEO of The Villages. 

Dear Friend of Children,

If EVER there was a time to CELEBRATE, HONOR and THANK The Villages dedicated FOSTER FAMILIES … it is this May, FOSTER PARENT APPRECIATION MONTH! We have always known it takes unique gifts and unwavering compassion to “stand in the gap” as a foster parent. But, during these unprecedented times, amidst a global pandemic, it is ESPECIALLY true!

The CORONAVIRUS, a virus of epic proportions, has created endless additional responsibilities for each and every foster parent licensed by The Villages. While nurturing and caring for our state’s most vulnerable children, STEPHANIE, CHARLES, TIFFANY and HOWARD, ANNE MARIE, CARTER, CARLOS and to name a few of the more than 300 Villages foster youth, parents are not only selflessly helping children HEAL from the childhood trauma, they also are serving as teacher, coach, energizer, chef, entertainer, and “sanitizer in chief!”

Many of the traditional avenues our organization has used to ENRICH the lives of these children during the summer months may not be available right now. Yet we are firmly committed to offering ENRICHMENT for The Villages kids … and the RESPITE it provides for their dedicated foster families. … in new and unique ways: virtual tutors; day camp, via Zoom; a YouTube Class in pottery or poetry; a self-directed summer fitness plan; or a special virtual STEM curriculum. These activities can ENRICH and ENLIGHTEN The Villages children and also provide some much-needed RESPITE for their loving foster, adoptive or kinship care families. Would you like to help us access and create some special SUMMER MEMORIES during these unique times? If so, join us here!

The patient, loving care from The Villages passionate foster parents has helped children who were never supposed to be able to walk, talk, or hear or be able to do all three! Parent perseverance has enabled hundreds of teenagers who never thought they could trust again to reach their full potential. And their enormous, generous hearts have transformed hopelessness into HOPE and PROMISE for hundreds of children, each day.

Join us in saluting these VILLAGES EVERYDAY HEROES! They are doing ALL they can to create BRIGHTER FUTURES!

Stay safe, healthy, and optimistic!

With Gratitude For Your Support,

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