2022 1ST QUARTER MESSAGE FROM SHEILA

Time is defined as the part of existence that is measured in minutes, days, and years. Or, could we be challenged to define time as the existence that is measured by memories? Time for Sally Kate Winters Family Services can be measured by the thirty-two years this program has been available for children or it can be more clearly measured by the impact (memories) made for the 4,617 children entering the doors for services. The cliché, time flies but memories last forever, offers a true perspective on the value of our services. As we quickly watch the calendar days click off for this year, we must make sure that time for 2022 is creating positive memories and a sustainable impact within each area of our lives. One thing is for sure, time is priceless – once you’ve lost it, you can never get it back.

Sustainable impact for SKWFS is also represented with the four substantial donations received through the Mississippi Children’s Promise Act for 2022. We are overwhelmed by the generosity of four banks who selected to support our work and validate the services offered through SKWFS. Benefiting from a MS tax credit, Cadence Bank (formerly Bancorp South) donated $200,000 to support the impact of services for local children and youth in crisis. Renasant Bank donated $75,000, Bank of Commerce donated $20,000, and The First Bank donated $20,000. This is a combined total of $315,000.00!! These donations are truly answered prayers for the funding challenges faced by our agency this year due to funding cuts and un-renewed grants. Not only are we finally operating out of the red for this fiscal year, the lives of children and youth are being impacted and memories are being made through these donations.

The donation of volunteer hours also impacted our program during this quarter. In addition to student interns, Junior Auxiliary members, and Kappa Delta Sorority members volunteering monthly, the Oak Hill Academy National Honor Society and members of Pine Lake Church also volunteered multiple times to interact with the children and youth utilizing our services. Leading up the Painting for Children fundraising event scheduled for April, several local professionals were identified as ‘local stars’ for children and also invited to volunteer. Deborah Mansfield served as the lead volunteer, assisting twenty-six individuals with painting sessions during the month of March. Multi-disciplinary team members, youth, chancery, and circuit court judges, and community leaders volunteered their time and talents to raise awareness of child abuse and neglect within our communities. Strategically selecting professionals working with child abuse cases or elected officials, the SKWFS Board of Directors used this opportunity to highlight the many partnerships established within the Golden Triangle Area to support children and youth in crisis.

As we kickoff April 2022, nationally recognized as Child Abuse Prevention Month, we are committed to helping make great childhoods happen!! Join us in this commitment for all children within our community. Childhood is the time in life when we learn the foundations of a being a good friend, good neighbor, and good citizen. The time that shapes who we become as adults. Childhood is a time when memories are made. Thank you for your support of our work!!

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