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Saundra Freeman's Fundraiser:

Getting Children Back to Happy

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Saundra Freeman

THE STORY:

Many of you know that I serve on the board of Lucy Daniels Center, the region’s largest nonprofit mental health agency for children and families. As parents we learn about the benefits of regular doctor visits, physical activity, and a well-balanced diet. We understand the need for stimulating learning aids and activities to promote early learning. However, we may overlook the importance of nurturing our children’s emotional health. Every child is unique. Some children develop cheerfully with no major issues while others experience challenges or trauma. For the latter, Lucy Daniels Center is here to help.

An estimated 15 million, or 20%, of our nation's young people can currently be diagnosed with a mental health disorder. And of those, less than half will receive care. Even more alarming - 70% of young people who become involved in the criminal system have an untreated mental health problem. That is a lot of hurting children who need help in finding a place within themselves where they can grow and develop into his or her own best self. And this is why I commit my time and my resources to the Center; Lucy Daniels Center helps get children back to happy.

We help nearly 700 children and families who turn to us for help each year. About 90% of those families pay less than the cost of services received and about 1 in 6 receive services for free. It is our goal to never say no to a family because of their ability to pay. That is why I am doing something I do not do often- I am asking for your help and support. Every dollar raised goes to work immediately so that we are able to help as many families as possible. It is our hope one day to never have to turn away a family because of their ability to pay. And with your help, that hope will one day be a dream realized.

Please join me in giving a gift of happy today. Thank you for your support of a cause that is so dear to my heart.

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