This past year has brought so many challenges for all of us to face throughout the entire country. However, the challenges are especially profound for the clients we serve. Our clients are more vulnerable in several areas including food insecurity, access to healthcare during a pandemic and the challenges that come with poverty, isolation, and anxiety. Inherent to our mission is defending and caring for the oppressed, marginalized, and forgotten within our community, promoting the dignity and value of every individual, and respecting our shared humanity. Our unwavering commitment to these core values remains strong in the face of a pandemic and the resulting economic hardships.
At the beginning of the pandemic, we quickly established remote therapy and child welfare visits whether through phone calls, Facetime or Zoom meetings. Thinking out of the box and collaborating with community partners allowed us to provide essential services at the Food Pantry, transitioning offenders from prison to safe housing, initiating home food deliveries and placing friendly phone calls to identify further needs or simply to have a chat with older adults living alone.
I am especially humbled by the unwavering efforts of the CSSW employees. Despite the numerous uncertainties and setbacks of their own life circumstances, many silver linings were cheerfully shared during this cloudy, uncertain time. I would like to share one of these beautiful stories with you.
In early August, Kyle and Ashley’s family grew from one child to five — all three years old or younger! Kyle and Ashley adopted their daughter, Abigail, from CSSW in 2017. They chose CSSW because the agency supported the birth parents to explore all the options for parenting prior to adoption. They attribute their positive relationship with Abigail’s birth mom and her extended family to the counseling they received. Amid the pandemic, Abigail’s birth mom announced she was pregnant again and asked if they would be willing to adopt the baby. One week later, they discovered the birth mother was expecting twins. Despite accepting an emergency foster placement a few weeks earlier, Kyle and Ashley did not hesitate to adopt the twins. Hearing Kyle and Ashley’s story reminds us how significant the need for our services truly are, and that the financial support of donors like you can make a profound difference in the lives of so many.
As we near the end of 2020, we will continue to face ongoing obstacles in 2021. I hope you will join me in making a gift to CSSW in gratitude for our own blessings. Now more than ever, we are so grateful for the support of our donors, volunteers, and community. I thank you for your continued friendship and pray for the safety and well-being of you and your loved ones.
President and CEO