Sometimes flip flops and sunscreen seem like an assumed beach necessity, but the children of Child & Family’s residential programs often visit the sandy shores of Rhode Island in their everyday shoes and clothes. Child & Family board member, Andrea Breyer, understood the need for these girls and boys to feel comfortable and have fun so she gathered her friends who came up with the idea to make and provide Summer Fun Packs.
Breyer and more than a dozen of her fellow mom’s from St. Michael’s Country Day School (Darcy Carr, Jacqueline Colbert, Molly deRamel, Tamara Farrick, Julie Fisher, Amy Gallagher, Colleen Iascone, Kristina Michelson, Sue Petrovas, Meghan Picotte, Sheila Powell, Elizabeth Van Liew, Stephanie Vieau and Pamela Younes) created a list of items to circulate to the other families associated with St. Michael’s. Immediately donations of bathing suits, towels, flip flops, sunscreen and beach toys were dropped off by students at the school so they could assemble the Summer Fun Packs. “Getting the kids involved was easy, they didn’t hesitate at all and it was a feel good moment for all of us,” shares Breyer. She also received positive feedback from parents who said that the project was an eye-opening moment for their children and offered a chance for them to take action.
Because the plan was to keep it small and manageable, the group focused on two group homes to start, and as a result it was successful. This singular act inspired them to cultivate a year-round relationship between the school and Child & Family.