Recently when I was visiting our library, our librarian, Sherri Ginsberg, told me about a program, Sing Me a Story Foundation, she was coordinating where children are matched with music composers. The kids write the lyrics, and the professional songwriters turn the words into recorded songs. The music is then available online and listeners are able to donate to support the partnering organization – in this case, Hillsides – and the foundation.
Aside from the donations the song may generate, this experience is extraordinary because it allows young people to express themselves and provides them with a great therapeutic benefit. One of the most recent songs released, “ My Chemical Romance,” poignantly expresses the challenges and isolation a 16-year-old girl feels. These lyrics are powerful expressions that provide her therapist and other members of her treatment team an unprecedented window into her fears and anxieties.
It is important to support expressive programs like these, whatever form they take, because they serve as statements of issues that are critical to address. Music, art, and recreational activities are all important mediums for vulnerable children and youth to share hurts and traumas that stand in the way of their well-being that words often cannot.
Each day, our experienced staff move children along a path that will restore their self-esteem and confidence on their way back to their homes and community. It is essential to be creative and leverage all the resources we have to offer children effective treatment. As much as we are dependent upon public funding sources to deliver services, the funding is never sufficient to meet the needs for those we serve. We are grateful for a generous donor community that helps us to maximize public funding with private dollars. The need is great and the resources never enough, so your generous support is always welcome.
This week we are launching our Annual Fund campaign. We ask you to help us continue to provide services that are not reimbursed with public funds but are nevertheless important for those in our care. We are also asking donors to consider giving a monthly amount. This gives people an opportunity to make a gift over a year-long period, which will have a lasting impact. A predictable resource of private funds makes us less dependent on periodic appeals and allows us to better allocate resources to various programs through the year.
Please consider making a pledge of support during our Annual Fund campaign. Please know that all you do makes the kind of impact that restores hope for the children, youth, and families we serve. Learn more about the Annual Fund campaign.
Thank you for your generous support!