Over the past week we have written about how the COVID-19 crisis affects our clients and how we deliver our services. Today, our Chief Advancement Officer, Bruin Richardson, writes about how the crisis affects CHS–and what you can do to help.
Friends and Supporters:
Over the past several days we have chronicled the amazing work that CHS continues to do as we all learn to adjust to a new normal. Our Foster Care Adoption team comforts children and teens living in foster care and group homes while using new and innovative ways to find them the permanent homes they so desperately want and need. Our Post Adoption team counsels and supports families who face uncertain futures while parenting children whose lives have been touched by trauma and loss, but also love and hope. Our Possibilities Project team works hard to reassure youth — let down by a system that promised to make their lives better — that someone is there to support and nurture them, even in these ever changing times.
As I write to you from my dining room, I feel privileged to be a part of this amazing CHS family of professionals, youth, teens, children and parents who have given their lives to something more than themselves. Those who believe in the Power of Family as a healing force. Like many others, my own family has been touched by these events. My wife, a travel professional, just filed her first ever unemployment claim. My son, about to graduate from college, wonders every day about his future and whether four years of hard work will result in a job. But we are here together, and we have each other to support and love one another, and that helps us to know that we will ultimately get through this together. But not everyone has those supports.
CHS’s mission is to build the strong and permanent families and connections that will help some of our most vulnerable children and youth thrive in the years to come. But we can’t fulfill that mission without you. As the Commonwealth faces a looming budget shortfall, the funding for our Foster Care Adoption and Post Adoption programs is in peril. Our major fund-raising event, celebrating our 120 years of service to the children, youth and families of Virginia has been postponed. Major funders have understandably repurposed some of their support to basic needs that are so crucial right now. But those whom we serve need us now more than ever.
So I ask that if you have the means to help advance our mission, you thoughtfully consider doing so now. Please help us help those who need the love and support that my family and your family has — support that will help them get through these trying times. The new CARES Act provides a charitable tax deduction for everyone of $300, whether they itemize deductions or use the standard deduction. This benefit makes it a little easier for everyone to give to those charitable causes that are most dear to their hearts. The Act also provides direct payments of $1,200 to many citizens. Some of the loyal CHS family–who have the ability to do so–have already elected to redirect that amount to further our work. At CHS we are incredibly grateful for that support, and we ask that if you have the ability to join their generosity you do so. The work that we do is crucial every day. So is your support.
Thank you for all you have done for the CHS family in the past. And thank you for all you will do to sustain us today and in the future. Because of you, our mission continues.