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Youth Villages’ families, youth and staff thank this year’s Holiday Heroes in New England

February 5, 2015



Thanks to the generosity of our Holiday Heroes in New England, Youth Villages fulfilled the holiday wishes of more than 390 children and young adults served by community-based programs and our Youth Villages-Germaine Lawrence Campus in Arlington, Massachusetts.

View a photo gallery featuring event photos, volunteer testimonials and thank-you notes from our children and families.


Two members of Youth Villages’ staff shared their heartwarming stories about the delivery of Holiday Heroes gifts:

“Oh, MY GOODNESS! Thank you! It’s hard to express how excited I was about walking into the Santa Workshop this afternoon. This was the first year that I have been helping two young people with children during the holidays. They are participating in our transitional living program for young people who have aged out of foster care or state services without family or other support. Their lives are so challenging. I help them gain employment, learn money management and increase their independent living skills. Growing up is often a daunting task for young adults with strong support systems, but the young people – the young families – we work with start so far behind. My young parents work low-income jobs which make meeting even their children’s basic needs a challenge. Of course, they still want Christmas to be special for their kids. I almost wanted to cry when I saw how the gifts I would be able to deliver to them through your generosity! Most recently, I was working on meal planning with one mom to help her reduce spending and minimize nightly meal preparation. I was so excited to see a Crock-Pot there for her family! This was not only a great gift for her but it was exactly what her family needs.

I cannot begin to express my gratitude to both the individuals and companies that donated with such enthusiasm and compassion! I can’t wait to see the faces when I am able to help these young parents give their children presents to open Christmas morning. I am even more excited that these young adults, who are so focused on providing for their children, will also be able to experience opening something for themselves. They often go without. Today, I was reminded why I do this work. People like you care about the many obstacles our young people face and want them to succeed! Our work matters, and I thank you for helping bring some sunshine their way! Thank You!”

– Jessica Kincman, Transitional Living Specialist

“I don’t know how to properly express, in words, just how much your kindness was appreciated by all of our families. The gifts we were able to deliver to these children made all the difference for them this Christmas! Their expressions were truly priceless, and it would not have been possible without your help. One of the teens I work with lives in a foster home, and he is now able to play new board games with his family when he visits them. A 7-year-old girl I am helping has a bike of her own to ride. Your contributions truly mean the world to these children.”

– Lauren Cardoso, Intercept Family Intervention Specialist

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