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Building Better Lives through Bridge

Thank you to everyone who supported Build Better Lives through Bridge! It was a wonderful morning and a great success!


Join Family & Children’s Agency on April 8 at Wee Burn Country Club for a morning of breakfast and bridge! Build Better Lives through BridgeBridge Front Cover welcomes experienced and novice bridge players to come together for an exciting morning to support FCA.

Click here to register!

Wednesday, April 8
Wee Burn Country Club
410 Hollow Tree Ridge Road, Darien

9 a.m. Registration and Raffle
9:30 a.m. Breakfast and Program
10 a.m. Sanctioned Duplicate and Social Bridge

Special thanks to our dedicated committee!
Jill Dimitrief
Rita Marber
Ginny Martin
Lisa Moseley

Painting With a Purpose

Thank you to everyone who supported “Painting with a Purpose” at Painting with a Twist in Westport! Such a fun evening with friends of FCA. Special thanks to FCA’s Junior Board for all their hard work. View pictures of the event below!

afternoon-at-the-lighthouse_watermarkThursday, February 26
7 – 9:30 p.m.
Painting With a Twist
1460 Post Road East – Westport
Seating Limited – Register Now!
$40 per person
Hosted by FCA’s Junior Board of Directors

Sip…Paint…Relax…all while supporting a great cause.  Join the Agency for a fun night out and learn how to paint “Afternoon at the Lighthouse”.  50% of the evening’s proceeds will benefit the After School Program at FCA.

FCA will be providing wine and snacks, but please feel free to bring your favorite beverage, if you prefer. Cups, wine openers and ice buckets will be provided, as well.

Payment online or via phone is required to guarantee your reservation.  If you are unable to pay online, please call the studio at 203-955-1855 to pay by phone.

Please Note: This class is intended for adult painters, although painters aged 15-20 will be permited, if accompanied by an adult.  You must be at least 21 to consume alcohol in the studio.

FCA to Provide VITA Services this Upcoming Tax Season

This tax season, Family & Children’s Agency will offer the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program at its 140 Water St. location in Norwalk. The VITA Program provides free income tax preparation to low-to-moderate individuals and families earning less than $52,000 per year. FCA is part of a coalition sponsored by the Connecticut Association for Human Services (CAHS), which coordinates VITA campaigns across Fairfield, New Haven and Litchfield Counties.

VITA Program services will be offered on Tuesdays between 5-9 p.m. beginning January 27 through April 7. These services are open to any individuals or families in the greater Norwalk region who earn less than $52,000 per year. Those participating in the VITA Program should bring the following items to their appointment:

  • Valid photo ID
  • Social Security cards or official Social Security number (SSN) verification letters for yourself, spouse and any dependents, or Individual Taxpayer Identification number with letter for you and anyone else to be on your tax return
  • All income statements from work or from self-employment, Social Security or pensions, including W-2, 1099-R, 1099-Misc.
  • All interest, dividend and capital gain statements from bank(s)
  • Education expenses and student loan payments
  • Total dollars paid for child and dependent care, in addition to the day care provider’s address and tax ID number
  • Copy of checking and savings account numbers, and routing numbers for tax return direct deposit
  • Mortgage interest and real estate taxes paid
  • Other deductions, property taxes paid to the town
  • Copy of last year’s federal and state returns if available

The VITA Program is provided by IRS-trained volunteers that 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.

To schedule a tax appointment with FCA, contact Crystal Charlton at (203) 523-5336. No walk-ins will be taken after 8:45 p.m.

Holiday Happenings 2014

Thank you to everyone who came together to donate to FCA families this holiday season. You have made the holiday season warmer and brighter for so many families. A holiday program of this magnitude is only made possible through our dedicated community and corporate partners who continue to support FCA clients each year.

Holiday Gift Giving and Sponsor a Family Programs
Family & Children’s Agency’s Holiday Gift Giving Collection received over 1,200 gifts for children and families of all ages this holiday season. In addition, our Sponsor a Family program provided 15 entire families with gifts.

Holiday Parties
Nine holiday meals and events were held for FCA families of all ages, including Family Support and Prevention, Homeless Services, the After School Program, Specialized Foster Care, Project REWARD and Home Care Services for Seniors.Thank you to all our sponsors and volunteers!

Chaz & AJ Toy Drive
For the third year in a row, Family & Children’s Agency has participated in the Chaz & AJ Toy Drive at the Webster Bank Arena, sponsored by 95.9 The FOX and Connoisseur Media. The radio stations of Connoisseur Media have been longtime friends of FCA and we thank them for their continued support!

Thank you!

Albourne America
Banana Republic-Danbury
Charter Communications
Chilton Family
Colon Family
Connoisseur Media, LLC
Dimitrief Family
Esposito Family
FactSet Research Systems
FCA’s Adoption Department
FCA’s Junior Board
Filaski Family
General Re Corporation
Girl Scout Troop #263
Greenshields Family
Hass Family
Kelly Associates Real Estate
Krivoshik Family
Managers Investment Group
Mecca Family
Lisa Moseley
News America Marketing
Norwalk Community College Student Physical Therapist Assistant Association
Norwalk Hospital
Norwalk Senior Center
Ox Ridge Elementary School
Pepperidge Farm
Jim Sampson
Helen Skipper
Stevenson Family
Sharon Sullivan & Jeffrey Kindler
Terex Corporation
Trinity Church
Weber Family
Wilton YMCA

Thank you to everyone who supported A Taste of Fairfield County!

Thank you to everyone who supported A Taste of Fairfield County, held Nov. 13 at Aitoro in Norwalk. The event was a huge success for Family & Children’s Agency and the After School Program. Special thanks to our Junior Board of Directors for all their hard work!

Featured restaurants: 

A Dash of Salt
DiMare Pastry Shop
Flipside Burger
Norwalk Community College
Nuestra Cultura LLC
Strada 18
Taco Loco

Thank you to our generous sponsors!

Jones Lang LaSalle
FactSet Research Systems

Expressive Arts Class Gallery Opening

The After School Program is once again lucky enough to have the Rowayton Arts Center fund a six-week art program. In addition to art expression, students will learn how to be art docents to describe their work to the public. Please join us in supporting the After School Program students for the Expressive Arts Class gallery opening! Facebook


DATE: Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014

LOCATION: Rowayton Arts Center, 145 Rowayton Ave. Rowayton, CT 06853

Time: 5 – 7 p.m.


Free Mental Health Screenings Available at Family & Children’s Agency on Wednesday, Oct. 29

On Wednesday, Oct. 29, a free mental health screening will be offered at Family & Children’s Agency’s 140 Water St. location in Norwalk from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. The event is part of a mental health screening series sponsored by the Southwest Regional Mental Health Board, Inc. throughout the month of October in conjunction with National Depression Screening Day. Screenings are offered free of charge and are open to the public.NDSDposter-Norwalk

“These free events are designed to raise awareness of the importance of regular health checkups, promote early detections, and provide materials that support wellness,” said Margaret Watt, Executive Director of the Southwest Regional Mental Health Board, Inc.

Information will be provided on a variety of mental wellness areas including stress management, sleep hygiene, mood-boosting foods, resilience and mindfulness. Visitors will take a free mental wellness screening and then chat about the results with a clinician and get a referral, if needed. Healthy snacks and activities will also be provided. In addition to mental health screenings, the Norwalk Community Health Center mobile bus will also be available on site and open for the public.

Online screenings and additional screening dates can be found at

Thank You to Minks to Sinks for a Great Sale

Another year, another great Minks to Sinks sale! Thank you to all who donated, consigned, volunteered and shopped this past week!


Minks to Sinks, often referred to as the greatest treasure hunt in town, will kick off its fall sale this weekend on Saturday, Oct. 4 at the corner of Danbury Road (Route 7) and School Road in Wilton. An auxiliary of Family & Children’s Agency (FCA), Minks to Sinks holds two tag sales per year offering an incredible variety of clothing, furniture, kitchen items, art, books, athletic equipment, toys and more. Proceeds from each sale benefit FCA.

Minks to Sinks has its roots in Wilton, having taken place since 1931. Today, the sale brings out nearly 200 volunteers from the Wilton community, many of whom have been involved in Minks to Sinks for over 30 years. During the semi-annual sale, volunteers work tirelessly to price, ticket, organize and display the thousands of items that are donated or consigned for the sale. Volunteers don the trademark red, white and blue striped aprons.

“Family & Children’s Agency’s relationship with Minks to Sinks dates back as far as the 1950s. In that time period, Minks to Sinks has donated roughly $2.9 million to FCA,” said Robert F. Cashel, President & CEO of FCA. “We are grateful each year for their wonderful work.”

Minks to Sinks sale hours are:

  • Saturday, Oct. 4th: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Sunday, Oct. 5th: 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Monday, Oct. 6th : 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Sunday and Monday dates are half-priced bargain days, with all items for sale at 50 percent off the marked price. On Monday, all shoppers may fill a bag with any merchandise at the sale for only $7.

For additional information on the Minks to Sinks sale, visit

Family & Children’s Agency’s Golf & Tennis Classic a Great Success

More than $100,000 was raised at Family & Children’s Agency’s (FCA) annual Golf & Tennis Classic, held Sep. 8, 2014 at Brooklawn Country Club in Fairfield. Mark Brown, of Wilton, and Jamie Bergin, of Darien, chaired the golf tournament, while Stephanie Mercado and Mary Cahill, both of Wilton, chaired the tennis portion of the event.

“The Golf & Tennis Classic continues to be a tremendous success each year for Family & Children’s Agency,” said Robert F. Cashel, President & CEO of FCA. “We are so grateful to our sponsors and players who supported the event this year. We are proud to say that 90 cents of every dollar donated goes directly to helping clients.”

Corporate sponsors, participants and donors for the golf outing included Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Barclays, Bloomberg Tradebook, cg42, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, Hillhead Capital Inc., The Hour Publishing Company, HSBC, Idelle Labs, Jefferies, KCG Hotspot, Maplewood Senior Living, McMahon Ford of Norwalk, MJP Wealth Advisors, Morgan Stanley, Nomura Securities International, Inc., People’s United Bank, RBS, Stein|Troost architecture, UBS, Weeden & Co. LP and Xerox Corporation. Individual sponsors and donors included Deanna and Jamie Bergin, Tammy and Mark Brown, Jill and Alex Dimitrief, Jay and Mark Lux, Kathleen and Peter Murphy, Barbara and William O. Murphy, and Friends of Family & Children’s Agency.


Annual School Supply Collection Held for Family & Children’s Agency Clients

As the summer comes to an end and the new school year begins, students throughout Fairfield County are buying back to school supplies. While this is considered a yearly rite of passage for many, items such as pencils, notebooks and backpacks can pose a financial burden for some families. This year, FactSet Research Systems, the McElveen family, Rachel Schiavone, the Sciarretta and Lord families of Wilton, the Service League of Boys (SLOBs) of New Canaan, St. Patrick’s Church of ReddingTauck World of Giving and the United Church of Rowayton are all donating school supplies for FCA clients.

150 backpacks were collected from local donors for FCA clients!

150 backpacks were collected from local donors for FCA clients!

“Family & Children’s Agency is so grateful to our supporters who donate back to school supplies for clients each fall,” said Robert F. Cashel, President & CEO of FCA. “School supplies are essential for academic success, and these donations will mean so much to the students and families receiving them.”

This is Rachel Schiavone’s first year donating school supplies in honor of their friend Victoria Soto, a teacher who was killed in the Sandy Hook tragedy. Both the Service League of Boys of New Canaan and the Sciarretta and Lord families of Wilton are in their seventh year of donating back to school supplies. The “Tools for School” drive, conducted by the Wilton families, collects backpacks filled with supplies, which are given to sixth grade students in the After School Program. The tradition began when one student in the family began to collect school supplies in lieu of birthday presents seven years ago. In its third year, FactSet Research Systems had a “giving tree” with over 100 request tags for employees to take.

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