BENEFITING: Youth on Their Own
My wife and I are fundraising for the 2011 Holiday Hope Party for Youth on Their Own (YOTO) students, which will take place on Friday, December 9. This annual event provides powerful emotional support and care for over 500 homeless students who are alone and without family. In addition to a nice meal and raffle prizes, each student will receive a $10 gift card. With your help, YOTO can meets its goal of delivering a heartfelt and heartwarming gift to each student.
YOTO has supported over 10,000 homeless youth since 1985. Its Mission is to support the high school graduation and continued success of homeless youth by providing financial assistance, basic human needs and guidance. YOTO's Vision is to empower young people on their own to become positive and productive citizens of our community. You can learn more about YOTO at www.yoto.org.
My first experience with YOTO was as a volunteer in the Strategies for Success program, which paired YOTO-enrolled students with adults to help students learn basic life skills -- for example, opening a checking account, balancing a checkbook, interviewing for a job, looking for housing -- skills that are second nature for many of us. I had the privilege of working with a student who was airlifted from New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina. This student, who came from a broken home, landed in Tucson with no family or friends for support -- literally a youth on their own. Over the course of the program, I believe I learned more from this student than the student may have learned from me, including a lesson in selflessness when I saw this student give a vagabond teenage couple a few dollars -- money the student really needed -- because the couple was hungry.
Please join us in making a difference for Youth On Their Own students this holiday season by making a donation to purchase $10 gift cards.
Thank you for your help, and Happy Holidays to all!