Guest Post by Irene K. Rickus, President and CEO of The Children’s Home. The Children’s Home strengthens communities in the Tampa Bay area through programs that support, serve, and protect children and their families.
UPDATE: They WON!!!! Thank you so much to everyone who voted!!!
Each of the four cottages at The Children’s Home serves as a safe place for children who have been abused, neglected, or abandoned. Each cottage provides a home-like setting to children ages 6-17, some of who are brothers and sisters. And each cottage is where the children eat their meals, do their homework, and sleep at night, cared for by professional staff.
Because the cottages are a home to the children while in our care, we put an enormous amount of time into making them comfortable and welcoming. Halloween brings decorations like jack-o-lanterns and ghosts, the holidays brings lights and trees (and presents!), and spring brings flowers to the outside of each cottage. Each cottage has a living room, den, TV room, kitchen and bedrooms.
As you can imagine, the cottages tell the stories of the children who live here. Siblings like Brianna and Jack, whose mother is addicted to drugs and unable to care for them. Both of these innocent children struggle with emotional issues and depression. Because many of the children who come to The Children’s Home have difficulty with emotional self-regulation, the cottages often show wear and tear much more quickly than a typical home. Books get thrown at walls, curtains get torn down and furniture gets destroyed. The cottages need a tremendous amount of upkeep to stay safe and welcoming for each child here. It takes significant time and money to conduct all the necessary maintenance and repairs.
Thankfully, The Children’s Home has been chosen as one of the finalists in IKEA’s Click for a Cause campaign. If we win, we will receive a makeover for improvements to each cottage! Please help us by voting for The Children’s Home in Tampa now and every day through April 8, 2013.
Choose “Tampa, Florida” on the IKEA Click for a Cause website and then vote for “The Children’s Home.” Your vote will make a difference! Each vote puts us one step closer to winning! Please take a moment and help children in the foster care system have a home that helps them heal. Thank you!