CASA of CGS partnered with Operation SJ and Seasons of Giving to Provide Hygiene Kits to hundreds of local youth in foster care
On any given day, over 430,000 children are living in foster care, separated from their parents and often their other siblings as well, due to abuse and neglect. With the average age of placement at just 8 years old, these children are often traumatized from such drastic life changes, feeling scared, confused, and alone while moving from home to home. Before the age of 18, the average foster child moves a total of seven times, and often during these moves, they lack basic necessities and carry their belongings in a trash bag.
Dedicated to eliminating trash bags as a form of luggage and providing foster youth with the basic necessities they often lack during moves, local charities Operation South Jersey and Seasons of Giving, along with several South Jersey businesses, partnered with us to collect hygiene products for our Duffel Bag Project over the past several months.
“We want to make sure our CASA kids have everything they need to hopefully help ease their transitions,” says Hillary Nichols, Outreach & Victim Services Coordinator at CASA of CGS and Founder of Operation South Jersey. “And we are always eager to partner with local charities and mobilize our communities to give back and get involved.”
This summer’s hygiene drive marked the beginning of a partnership with local nonprofit Seasons of Giving, a South Jersey-based charity dedicated to closing the gap between those with and those without. A mere four years old, Seasons of Giving has grown exponentially since its inception in 2017, when the charity started simply as a post on social media asking for donations of water for a local church’s food distribution drive during the summer.
Floored with the overwhelming response from his community, Seasons of Giving Founder Jay Tunnicliffe was inspired to continue creating donation drives every two weeks that summer, calling on his community to give back to support those in need. Jay’s donation drives continued to grow bigger than he could have imagined, and a year later he began the long process of registering as a 501c3. In 2018, Seasons of Giving was officially born, transforming his summer project into a year-round commitment to giving back.
Since then, Seasons of Giving has created a monumental impact on the lives of countless people throughout South Jersey. The nonprofit is now organized in four key areas of giving: Seasons of Support, through which they support other local nonprofits through need-based campaigns, donations, and fundraisers; Seasons of Sustenance, a year-round food pantry located inside Church by the Bay in Galloway; Seasons of Sharing, through which they sponsor local families for Christmas; and Seasons of Service, through which they team up with other nonprofits or religious organizations to create service projects for local community members to participate in and give back to those in need.
“Seasons of Giving is an opportunity for people who want to give back and get involved but just might not know how to go about it,” says Seasons of Giving Founder Jay Tunnicliffe. “It’s important to stay engaged and stay involved because you’ll never know when you’ll need the help--and it feels good to give back.”
Through our collaboration on this Hygiene drive, Seasons of Giving generously donated 432 toothpaste bottles, 240 kids shampoo bottles, and 1,000 toothbrushes (along with 5 more boxes of various hygiene products)--an outstanding amount that will help us provide hundreds of CASA youth with essentials to help ease their transitions. We are so incredibly grateful for the work they put in to help support our amazing CASA youth!
Thank you so much to Seasons of Giving, along with all the local businesses partnered with us as drop-off locations over the past few months for our Hygiene Drive: Church by the Bay, Millville Nutrition, Fruiggie Juice and Bowls, R&R Auto Group, Philly Pretzel Factory - Mullica Hill, Vern's Place 4 Parts LLC, Century Savings Bank, Cooks Cleaners, and Hopeloft. We truly could not do this work without your kind, giving hearts!
Follow Seasons of Giving on Facebook to get involved stay up-to-date on their campaigns. If you would like to make a donation to our ongoing Duffel Bag/Hygiene Drive to support our foster youth, visit our website at https://donate.chip-in.us/?nonprofitId=105987.