BENEFITING: JUNIOR LEAGUE OF GRAND RAPIDS MICHIGAN INC
What are we doing?
The Junior League of Grand Rapids is building our first Wellness Adventure Yard on property next to the YWCA Domestic Crisis Center in the Heritage Hill neighborhood of Grand Rapids, Michigan. The Wellness Adventure Yard, or WAY for short, is an outreach effort to provide safe and engaging play areas for children who have suffered trauma or sickness, or who are coping with cognitive or physical disabilities. This WAY installation is going to help children who are recovering from the trauma of domestic and/or sexual violence and are temporarily living in a shelter or transitional housing. Doesn't that sound like a great idea?
Why go to all this effort?
The children that are living at this shelter have just escaped from the reality of domestic violence. If that isn't scary enough, they are now living in a new house, with lots of other people, without their favorite stuffed animals and toys and away from everything that was familiar to them. If they had a cool playground, with awesome climbing, balancing, swinging,and spinning equipment, maybe they would smile again, just for a minute.
What good will it do?
We're glad you asked! Don't tell the kids, but while their bodies are busy playing in the WAY, their brains will be busy processing all kinds of stimulus that a bunch of really smart people assure us will help them to deal with their emotions and reduce the liklihood of depression, suicidal tendencies, violence, anxiety, fears, phobias, insomnia, and low self-esteem. For those of us who are Mom's, we just know that a good dose of fresh air, some giggles and old fashioned fun makes our kids happier (and sleep better at night)!
Oh - and by the WAY, when the yard is done, the YWCA shelter will be able to qualify for a license to offer onsite childcare to the 65 or so families that they are serving on any given day! That is a lot of kiddos who will no longer have to hear the stories shared in counselling sessions or try to sit quietly through job interviews.
Will you help us make a difference?
We hope you see what we are getting at here and that you want to help. Please click on the big orange donate button and support our efforts. The women of the Junior League thank you but most importantly YOU can sleep well tonight knowing that you were a part of something WAY important.