Family & Children’s Agency’s annual Golf & Tennis Classic will be held on Monday, September 8, 2014 at Brooklawn Country Club in Fairfield. With the support of community-minded businesses and individuals, the golf outing has evolved into a major fundraiser for the Agency and its programs. The Classic is a wonderful way for both corporations and individuals to support the work of Family & Children’s Agency, while enjoying a relaxing round of golf with friends, clients, and colleagues, at one of the premier private clubs in Fairfield County.
Join Family & Children’s Agency for the 2014 Golf & Tennis Classic, to be held at Brooklawn Country Club in Fairfield on Monday, Sep. 8, 2014.
Family & Children’s Agency (FCA) and Norwalk Community College (NCC) were recently honored with the Campus-Community Partnership Award by the Connecticut Campus Compact (CTCC) for their longstanding partnership supporting FCA’s After School Program.
The After School Program, which serves 50 Norwalk middle school youth throughout the school year and summer, is located on the NCC campus. Students in the After School Program potentially face multiple barriers to academic success, and the Program includes enrichment activities, mentoring services, helps promote character development, reinforces executive functioning skills and prepares students for a successful transition into high school. The Program now includes an Alumni Component, which supports previous students throughout high school and prepares them for college.
“FCA’s partnership with NCC is unique in that it allows these youth to have the opportunity to be exposed to what it’s like on a college campus and use all the resources available there,” said Robert F. Cashel, President & CEO of FCA. “We are grateful for our longstanding partnership with NCC and for being recognized by CTCC.”
Since its inception in 2004, the program has doubled in size and many former After School Program students now attend NCC.
“It is an honor for Norwalk Community College’s partnership with Family & Children’s Agency to be recognized by our peers in the Connecticut Campus Compact as an exemplar of college and community engagement,” said Dr. Pamela Edington, NCC Provost and Dean of Academic Affairs. “This partnership is so powerful because it is supporting multiple generations of students in achieving their educational goals. “Middle school students benefit from their location on a college campus while being supported in their academic and social development. NCC students have the opportunity to act as role models for younger students while learning how to apply college-level material in a real-world setting. By leveraging each organization’s strengths, it’s a win for everyone–students, NCC, FCA and the community at-large!”
In addition to the After School Program, FCA and NCC have also collaborated to provide free, short-term counseling for NCC students who are experiencing challenges in their lives. FCA’s highly trained social work staff is available to help students through times of crisis, transition and individual issues.
CTCC is a statewide program based on the Fairfield University campus that promotes improving community life and social responsibility.
IMAGINE 2014: A Night on Broadway was a great success! Our deepest thanks to our dedicated co-chairs, talented committee, tireless volunteers, generous sponsors and dear friends of the Agency who supported this event.
View pictures from the evening:
It’s opening night, the velvet rope is lined with photographers, and the marquee is shining just a bit brighter. You look up and in big, bold letters it reads, “IMAGINE 2014: A Night on Broadway.”
The curtain rises on May 17 for Family & Children’s Agency’s annual Benefit, which will pay homage to New York City’s celebrated theater district. Spare yourself the hustle and bustle of 42nd St. and join us for an evening of dinner, dancing, and live and silent auctions.
IMAGINE 2014 is sure to be a night of critical acclaim. We hope you’ll join us.
IMAGINE 2014: A Night on Broadway
Woodway Country Club, 540 Hoyt Street, Darien, CT, 06820
Saturday, May 17, 2014
6:30 p.m. Cocktails and Silent Auction
8:00 p.m. Dinner, Dancing, Live Auction
With Mother’s Day around the corner, the timing of the Weston Women’s League’s Annual Baby Shower for new and expecting mothers could not have been more fitting. Held on May 1 at Christ Church in Norwalk, approximately 25 mothers in Family & Children’s Agency’s (FCA) Family Support & Prevention program were treated to a luncheon and received gifts, such as clothing, diapers, toys and baby essentials. This is the Weston Women’s League’s sixth year hosting the baby shower.
“FCA is so thankful for the tremendous effort put forth by the Weston’s Women’s League year after year in planning this event,” said Robert F. Cashel, President & CEO of FCA. “This is a wonderful celebration for these women, many of whom would not have the opportunity for a baby shower otherwise.”
“This day is a lovely celebration for these women about becoming a parent,” said Mary Kate Locke, Director of Prevention, Adoption and Youth Development at FCA.
Family Support & Prevention services at Family & Children’s Agency provides support and guidance to parents and their young children through the Nurturing Family Network, Fatherhood Initiative, Maternal Outreach and Mentoring Service (MOMS) program, Healthy Start and Child FIRST. The program’s trained staff educates parents so they can build a strong foundation for their family’s growth. All programs are offered free of charge in English and Spanish to families in the Greater Norwalk area and are on a voluntary basis.
Thank you to Minks to Sinks, Family & Children’s Agency’s auxiliary, for another successful event. We hope you all had a chance to visit the greatest tag sale in Fairfield County “under the tents” in Wilton. The next sale with be this October… stay tuned!
It’s that time of the year again! Minks to Sinks, Family & Children’s Agency’s auxiliary, will host its bi-annual Spring tag sale this weekend, May 3-5.
Saturday, May 3, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sunday May 4, 12-4 p.m.
Monday, May 5 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
The sale is located under the tents at 395 Danbury Road at the intersection of Route 7 and School Road in Wilton.
Minks to Sinks is a bi-annual tag sale rooted in the town of Wilton’s history since 1931. The sale, which garnered its name from the variety of items donated including minks and sinks, has since grown to staff more than 160 volunteers of all ages from the Wilton community and beyond. Rain or shine, the sale occurs each spring and fall “under the tents” at the intersection of Route 7 and School Road in Wilton. Volunteers may be found donning their trademarked red, white, and blue striped aprons. All proceeds will benefit Family & Children’s Agency.
Overnights at camp, whether for a weekend or the summer, are normalizing parts of childhood for so many of us. It’s a chance to explore, laugh, play, grow and learn with new friends. Whether you loved it or hated it, for a short period of time you were taken out of your element and came out knowing more about yourself and others. Youth in the foster care system more often than not never have a chance to experience these opportunities. On Feb. 21, however, 24 adolescents, and their dedicated FCA staff and parent volunteers, were taken to Camp Jewell in Colebrook, Conn. for a weekend that was nothing less than extraordinary.
Although this winter has been especially brutal, it did not hinder the fun to be had at Camp Jewell. The youth participated in a range of activities including snow tubing, rope climbing, rock climbing and broom ball on ice. The youth dined together, participated in team-building exercises, had a dance party and huddled together in sleeping bags for a scary movie night. After all, what’s camp without a few ghost stories?
Moreover, these activities allowed the youth to enhance such skills as problem solving, conflict resolution, team building, public speaking and strategizing.
“It was wonderful being able to watch the youth build positive relationships with their peers, learn to appreciate the difference in others while building confidence and self-esteem about the young adults they are becoming,” said Janeen Reid, Specialized Foster Care Adolescent Services Supervisor. “Youth in foster care need to be able to feel and experience normality like other youth, and our Adolescent Programming unit is committed to doing just that.”
Minks to Sinks, the Wilton Auxiliary of Family & Children’s Agency (FCA), gave its largest donation in the auxiliary’s history to FCA at its annual kick-off meeting, held Jan. 29 at Trackside in Wilton. The auxiliary organization,
From left to right, outgoing 2013 Minks to Sinks Chair Meg Campbell, outgoing 2013 Minks to Sinks Chair and FCA Board of Directors member Trish Weber, Minks to Sinks Treasurer Yolanda Bonomo, FCA President & CEO Robert F. Cashel and FCA Board Chairman Julene Greenshields.
which has been in existence since 1931, has a longstanding tradition of supporting FCA. Meg Campbell and Trish Weber, outgoing chairs of Minks to Sinks, presented the donation of $100,000 to FCA President & CEO Robert F. Cashel at the organization’s annual meeting. Including this gift, Minks to Sinks has donated $120,000 to FCA this fiscal year.
Minks to Sinks hosts two semiannual tag sales in May and in October each year in Wilton. The event has taken place since 1931, and the name was derived in 1952 when one volunteer donated a mink, and another a sink. Volunteers donate a variety of household items, clothing, furniture, and toys for consignment. Today, the sales bring out nearly 200 volunteers from the community, many of whom have been involved in Minks to Sinks for over 30 years. The sales are held at the intersection of Route 7 and School Road in Wilton under the tents, and volunteers can be found wearing the red, white, and blue striped aprons.
“FCA would like to thank Minks to Sinks for their recent donation and their hard work yearlong to support the Agency’s work with the more than 10,000 children, families, youth, adults and seniors we help each year,” said Robert F. Cashel. “
The next Minks to Sinks sale will be held May 2-4, 2014. To learn more about Minks to Sinks, visit www.MinkstoSinks.info.
Family & Children’s Agency (FCA) is a designated site in Norwalk for the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program this upcoming tax season. The VITA Program is part of a nationwide initiative sponsored by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and provides free income tax preparation to low-to-moderate individuals and families earning less than $52,000 a year. VITA volunteers play a critical role in ensuring that all Connecticut families can access valuable tax credits without paying high fees. Volunteers will serve residents of the greater Norwalk area and work on-site at FCA. FCA is part of a VITA Program coalition, sponsored by the Connecticut Association for Human Services (CAHS), which coordinates VITA campaigns across Fairfield, New Haven and Litchfield Counties.
IRS-trained volunteers are certified to prepare basic tax returns using TaxWise Online software. VITA sites also connect families to programs and services that can help them to maximize their tax refunds, such as matched savings programs, budget coaching, financial education, and benefits screenings.
Tax preparation appointments are available on Thursdays between 5-9 p.m. from Jan. 30-April 3 at FCA’s 140 Water St. location in Norwalk. To make an appointment, please contact Dijuana Jordan, (203) 523-5723 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Left to right) Robert F. Cashel, FCA President & CEO, with Junior Board of Directors Co-Chairs Kristin McClutchy, Doug Stern and Victorai Whitehead
On Nov. 21, the Junior Board of Directors at Family & Children’s Agency (FCA) hosted A Taste of Fairfield County at Aitoro Appliances to benefit Homeless Services. In addition to great food, live music and raffles, guests were able to hear from Homeless Services staff members about the work they do and the struggles their clients face. Many guests also donated nonperishable food items for clients. Nearly 140 guests came out to support the Agency and over $8,000 was raised to support the Agency’s Homeless Services.
“A Taste of Fairfield County was a great success, and we are extremely appreciative of all the hard work from our Junior Board of Directors in organizing this event,” said Robert F. Cashel, President & CEO of FCA. “The holidays are fast approaching, and this event was a reminder to many that as we gather around our table with family and friends, we should also give back to those who may be less fortunate.”
The Rowayton Arts Center has partnered with Family & Children’s Agency (FCA) to promote creative expression through the arts in the youth we serve. The Expressive Arts Class, a six-week program underwritten by the Rowayton Arts Center, offers students in the After School Program the opportunity to study visual arts and enhance their personal expression. Art created by these select students will be displayed at the center from Nov. 1-Nov. 8. A reception for the gallery opening will be held Friday, Nov. 1 at 5:45 p.m. at the Rowayton Arts Center.
“It is amazing to see the impact of exposure to the arts in the young people we work with,” said Jennifer Barahona, Director of Youth Development at FCA. “Time and time again, we witness the power of visual and creative arts in drawing out a young person and developing self-esteem. That kind of social and emotional learning is priceless. We have kids who are like whole new people in the hour they are in the art program.”
The After School Program serves 50 Norwalk middle school youth on the campus of Norwalk Community College Monday-Friday. Students served through the program potentially face multiple barriers to success. In addition to academic support, the Program offers enrichment activities, helps promote character development, reinforces executive functioning skills, and prepares students for a successful transition into high school.
“Self-esteem in young people is built by learning new skills, discovering exciting and creative aspects of themselves, and having the satisfaction of a finished product,” says Jennifer. “To then have it displayed in a professional gallery is a source of enormous pride that is obvious to all.”
For more than 50 years the Rowayton Arts Center (RAC) has been a community cultural hub that provides a welcoming environment for the exchange of arts-related ideas and for regional artists in all media to exhibit and sell their work. Located on the banks of the scenic Five Mile River, the Arts Center hosts exhibitions, lectures, musical events and other activities. In its second-floor studio, RAC offers year-round classes and workshops for creative people of all ages and at all ability levels. RAC also underwrites arts education programs throughout Norwalk. The Rowayton Arts Center is located at 145 Rowayton Avenue and is open from Tuesday through Saturday from 12:00-5:00 p.m. and Sunday’s 1-4pm. Admission is free. For information call 203-866-2744 or visit the web site at www.rowaytonartscenter.org.
For more information regarding the After School Program at FCA, please contact Marion Herbert, Manager of Communications, at (203) 523-5777 or visit www.FamilyandChildrensAgency.org.