As part of NBC New York’s coverage on the anniversary of Hurricane Maria, reporter Ray Villeda visited The New York Foundling’s newly renovated Head Start center in Vega Alta, which was completely destroyed after the hurricane. WATCH HERE (at 2:45)

When hurricanes Irma and Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico one year ago, all of The New York Foundling’s 44 Head Start and Early Head Start centers on the island sustained significant damage, and life changed dramatically for the nearly 1,500 Puerto Rican children and families that we serve.

 

Thanks to your critical support, in the months that followed, our community began the long process of rebuilding. Your donations helped to ensure that home-based services continued and that our staff was able to provide thousands of meals to families – even when sites were not operational.

 

To date, we’ve reopened 39 of our 44 Head Start centers, including one of our most severely damaged centers in the Bajuras community of Vega Alta (see below for photos)None of this would have been possible without the support of people like you.

 

Before and After Photos from Vega Alta

Top photos: Damage to our Vega Alta center after Hurricane Maria (December 2017). Bottom: The reopening of our center in Vega Alta (June 2018).

A year has passed, but we know there’s still much work to be done. The Las Flores center in Coamo needs to be entirely reconstructed. Every site requires new technology infrastructure. Our services continue to be an essential support system for families who are still struggling post-hurricanes.

 

Thank you for partnering with The New York Foundling to positively impact the lives of so many people in Puerto Rico. We look forward to sharing more successes from the island in the year ahead, and are deeply grateful for the impact that your support has made possible over the last year.

 

Related posts:

Spotlight Exclusives shares the first article in a yearlong series from Youth Today examining higher education for youth in foster care, made possible in part by The New York Foundling.  “Early on, many youth in foster care develop a certain resourcefulness that allows them to navigate thorny situations and push through layers of bureaucracy. But almost inevitably, youth in care struggle as they leave high school, enroll in community college, trade school or university and make their way toward graduation.” READ MORE

Bill Baccaglini, CEO and President of The New York Foundling, introduces Youth Today’s year long series dedicated to exploring higher education for youth in foster care, and discusses the importance of child welfare professionals’ role in creating change. READ MORE

The first article in a yearlong series examining higher education for youth in foster care, made possible in part by The New York Foundling. This article details what reporters plan to examine over the next 12 months, from what’s working to what’s not when it comes to supporting teens in succeeding in high school and college. READ MORE

Nearly one year ago, hurricanes Irma and Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico, damaging more than half of The Foundling’s 42 Head Start centers on the island, which 1,500 children and their families relied upon daily for child care, quality early childhood education, meals, and more.

 

To support the ongoing recovery and reconstruction efforts, The New York Foundling staff teamed up with volunteers from Cisco to set up, package, and ship 100 new HP Chromebooks to The Foundling’s Head Start centers in Puerto Rico.

 

These high-tech laptops, which will arrive ready-to-use directly out of the box, are instrumental in creating even greater accessibility for Foundling staff, whose daily work changes the trajectory of children and families’ lives.

 

The shipment is part of The Foundling’s larger initiative to upgrade technology at its centers on the island. The goal is not only to rebuild, but to further connect the New York and Puerto Rico offices through the use of cloud-based technology, 24/7 tech support, and other cost-saving improvements.

 

Thank you to Cisco’s volunteers who were able to lend a hand in getting these crucial resources to our teams in PR!

 

Related posts:

Jasmine Edwards recently graduated from The Dorm Project, a joint initiative of The Foundling, the Administration for Children’s Services, and City University of New York to give youth in foster care a successful, supportive higher education experience. She spoke with New York Nonprofit Media about navigating college as a young adult in foster care.. WATCH HERE

Written by Foundling Guest Blogger, Christina, a Graduate of The Foundling’s Road to Success Program.

 

My freshman year at Johnson & Wales University was such a difficult but successful  journey. It all began in August 2017 when I first moved on campus and actually started to experience the college life. I’ve learned so much about myself and life while being away at college in Florida.

 

So far, the first-year experience has definitely made me stronger as a person and has taught me so many great characteristics about myself that I did not know before. I knew I was a strong person from all of the past things in my life, but I didn’t know I was this strong. I was able to maintain two jobs while balancing school and my studies.

 

A little overview on my daily routine back at school: I would begin my mornings with about two classes 8-10 a.m. followed by 12-2 p.m., then I would go to work from 3-7 p.m., and after that shift I would work another shift at my second job from 7 p.m.-11 p.m. It was difficult to maintain all of this, especially with a heavy class load of work from school, but if I am determined to complete something I will not stop until it is done.

 

I’m very excited to see what the next few years of college bring for me because in a short amount of time I have learned so much and was blessed with so many opportunities. My high school tutor through The Foundling’s Road to Success program from high school, Rachel, helped me so much throughout high school and helped me shape me for college — and I believe that is one of the main reason I was able to go into college with such a positive and determined mindset.

 

The Foundling has been such a great support system for me not only in college, but throughout these past few years. They made sure I had all the resources I needed after high school as well as before and during college. I am excited to see where this adventurous journey will lead me.

 

The Foundling’s Road to Success program is a tutoring program especially for high school students who are in foster care. Watch this video story to learn more about Road to Success and how our wrap-around education services empower students to succeed in high school and beyond.  

 

Related posts:

This guest blog was written by Gabbie, an intern with The New York Foundling and a Dorm Project student.

 

Earlier this year, I spoke at a board meeting as a representative of The Dorm Project, an effort led by The Foundling, City University of New York and the Administration for Children’s Services, and ended up meeting Bill Baccaglini. In casual conversation, not knowing his position with The Foundling, I spoke with him about my aspirations of running a nonprofit someday, and how I wanted to gain experience in the field. Little did I know, this conversation would lead me to an internship at The Foundling, working with the Development and Communications team. I jumped at the opportunity, not only for the experience, but to form a relationship with The Foundling as more than just a scholar with The Dorm Project. I knew that The Foundling had a reputation as an agency that provides services to many different communities, and I wanted to be a part of that.

 

Since starting here I’ve learned more about the different preventive services The Foundling offers, which has furthered my desire to become more involved. The skills I am currently learning are teaching me how to be involved on a more administrative level. For example, working with the Development team, I’m learning how they fundraise, reach out to their donors, and what systems they use to keep track of it. With the Communications team, I get to explore a more creative role with editing the newsletter, and creating flyers and certificates.

 

The skills I am learning are transferable to the Youth Advisory Board (YAB) that I am a part of with New Yorkers for Children, another human services nonprofit in New York City. I am working on creating marketing materials in attempts to recruit more youth, as well as establishing a brand. The YAB is also throwing our first major event this summer, and I am using these skills to actively fundraise and form relationships with donors. I also hope to establish some form of a mission statement, using the model of the Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG).

 

Working with The Foundling this summer has given me my first taste of the foundations of a nonprofit and what it takes to have an organization function. It has also inspired me to be involved with some of their other programs, such as the Crisis Nursery, fueling me to explore other career paths.

 

Related posts:

Written by Foundling Guest Blogger, Tiana, a Graduate of The Foundling’s Road to Success Program

 

Wow! I can not believe that I am going in to my senior year at Spelman College! It seems like it was just yesterday that I moved into Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Hall, my freshman dorm, on the hottest day of the year.

 

My time at Spelman has been unbelievably amazing, from interning with AT&T every summer, to serving as the Vice President and Communications Coordinator of Spelman College’s first LGBTQIA+ organization — plus experiencing one of the best homecoming celebrations on earth and building lifelong ties with my Spelman sisters. Spelman College has taught me so much, and I am extremely excited for what is coming!

 

During my time at Spelman College I have had the opportunity to rotate through three different internships with AT&T: Market Sales and Execution, Small Business Solutions, and Sales Operations and Corporate Communications. I even served as their Campus Brand Ambassador for the Atlanta University Center Consortium.

 

Each experience was completely different. The Market Sales and Execution internship afforded me the opportunity to learn the retail side of the business. I was able to interact with retail representatives, visit various stores, and track results on each of the stores in the New York and New Jersey areas.

 

Next, I embarked on the Small Business Solutions journey. I was uber excited because my dream goal is to eventually start my own small business. I did not learn everything about what it takes to run a small business, but I did have the chance to interact with small businesses that have service through AT&T. It was here that I realized my love for sales. I became an Excel aficionado, and even cold-called potential and current clients. I shadowed various account managers and was able to sit in on client meetings. While between rotations, I was selected to serve as a Campus Brand Ambassador. I was able to host informational sessions and give my friends the opportunity to join me at AT&T.

 

My current and final rotation with AT&T is within the Sales Operations and Corporate Communication department. My presence here will not go unnoticed, as I helped work on communications pertaining to the merger of Time Warner/Spectrum and AT&T!

 

On May 19, 2019, I will be graduating from Spelman, the country’s No. 1 historically black university, as a Political Science major. However, I did not begin my college journey that way. First I was an Economics major, then I switched to Sociology, and finally I fell in love with Political Science in the second semester of my sophomore year.

 

Tiana was a Foundling Road to Success student who still talks with her tutor for help and guidance while away at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia, which is currently ranked as the top HBCU in the United States. Tiana has written multiple posts on her experiences at Spelman College, and you can read two of them at the links below!

 

Related posts: