Preparing Children for Success in School and at Home

Village of Impact members pack backpacks for kids in need and learn the importance of providing a safe stable home for children through foster care

Going back to school can be daunting for many kids as they navigate new classrooms and occasionally new schools, too. It can be especially tough for kids who don’t have access to all the supplies they need, and don’t feel as confident and prepared as they embark on a new school year. Village of Impact families — NVFS’ family giving circle — gathered for a day of service to support NVFS’ Back-to-School Drive by stuffing backpacks for children at NVFS’ SERVE Family Shelter and Hilda Barg Homeless Prevention Center. Attendees excitedly picked out new supplies for these kids, ranging from kindergarteners to high schoolers, as part of the drive’s overall goal to support 1,800-plus kids in need.

New schools aren’t the only thing that can be daunting, though. Many children in our community find themselves entering new foster homes when their families are unable to provide them with a safe, stable home. NVFS’ foster care program ensures that these children are able to receive the love and support they need during this difficult transition by recruiting and training quality foster parents. Families at the Village of Impact event learned about how NVFS supports foster children in Northern Virginia through therapeutic foster care. NVFS shared information with parents not only about the importance of providing a stable home for children through fostering, but how families and adults can provide important short-term foster care through respite care.

Younger attendees read “A Mother for Choco” by Keiko Kaska, in which a young orphaned bird named Choco searches for a home and someone to call his mother. He initially looks for mothers with shared characteristics — feathers, round cheeks, etc. — but isn’t able to find a perfect match. What he does eventually find, however, is a loving home, courtesy of Mrs. Bear and her adopted children, which illustrates that families can come in all shapes and sizes. The children finished up their activity by drawing pictures of what family means to them.

Overall, families enjoyed a day of impact — impact on the community and impact on their understanding of the challenges some of their neighbors face.

“You just never know what someone may be going through,” shared one attendee.

The Village of Impact will host its next event as a virtual service opportunity in October. Learn more and RSVP today.