Buck & Angela Showalter Support KidsPeace Foster Care in Maryland
Earlier this year, KidsPeace Foster Care Maryland, announced a commitment from Baltimore Orioles Manager William “Buck” Showalter and his wife Angela to lend their voices in support of the organization’s mission. KidsPeace provides Foster Care and Community Services to hundreds of children with mental and behavioral health issues.
Showalter, the two (2) time American League “Manager of the Year”, was named manager of the Baltimore Orioles last July. Showalter and his wife have committed to be featured in a Public Service Announcement for KidsPeace; while Angela Showalter has agreed to serve as a volunteer member of the KidsPeace Board of Associates for Maryland.
“We are thrilled that the Showalters have made this personal commitment to KidsPeace,” said William Isemann, KidsPeace President & CEO. “We thank them for recognizing the importance of our mission to bring hope, help and healing to children and families everywhere and we look forward to their future involvement.”
“Angela and I are very honored to support KidsPeace in their efforts to provide children and families in crisis needed programs and services throughout Baltimore and the surrounding communities,” said Buck Showalter, Baltimore Orioles Manager. The city of Baltimore has more than 4,000 children in foster care. “The needs of our local foster youth are immense. KidsPeace partners with the city and surrounding counties to find homes for many of these children and to give them hope,” says Sandy Rappeport, Maryland Program Manager. “Foster youth who age out of the system are faced with staggering realities: only 46 percent complete high school, 40-50 percent are homeless within 18 months, and 25 percent are incarcerated within 24 months.” Critical KidsPeace programming works to address those realities but can be even more successful with increased local community involvement.
In addition to placing foster youth with loving families, KidsPeace provides services to foster youth. “There are many ways that foster youth can be supported—through providing homes, becoming a mentor, or by contributing financially to support programs,” says Rappeport. One such activity is a mentoring program for children and adolescents in foster care, providing support through group activities and one-on-one relationships. “We are working to build our volunteer mentor program because it helps youth develop a strong sense of self worth and strengthen their ability to interact with others in positive ways,” says Gina Seyfried, Volunteer Coordinator.
Another activity, the KEYS program, provides life-skills training for foster youth ages 16-20, who face uncertain times as they prepare for their transition from care to independent living. The KEYS Program provides training in various life skills areas, including: goal setting, personal values, self-awareness, banking and money management, employment and others. “Few young adults leave home at 18 ready to care for themselves, so they rely on their adult support system to provide them guidance, emotional support, housing and financial assistance,” says Seyfried. “But a young person in foster care often misses out on these supports. The KEYS program is here to offer tangible, hands on activities to unlock their future success.”
Supporters of annual events, including a 5K Run and Fun Walk held in October and a Winetasting Event in September, help fund KidsPeace foster youth programs. “Our local community has shown that they have big hearts and we are hoping we can continue fostering relationships that help them see the joys of connecting with a child who needs their help,” says Rappeport.
The Showalters served as honorary chairs for the KidsPeace Annual 5K Race.
Foster Care News
Diane Sancilio and Gina Seyfried shared some news with us about the Baltimore and Columbia, MD, Foster Care offices.
• MASN has released the PSA of Angela and Buck (Orioles Manager) Showalter about KidsPeace Maryland Foster Care. They are super stars! The video is beautiful and incorporates footage that BOA member Lee Anderson filmed at last year’s 5K event and of some of our wonderful foster families. To view the PSA, go to: http://www.youtube.com/user/KidsPeaceFosterCare
• The Sponsorships for both the Wine Tasting and 5K have been spectacular. Thanks to everyone who worked so hard on recruiting these generous individuals and businesses.
• The Maryland Face Book page is up and running. If you haven't already, please "Like Us." If you have any questions, contact email@example.com.
• Associates from Maryland FCCP brought the Maryland Board of Associates to PA to tour the campus and meet with some key people at Headquarters. Diane Sancilio, Sandy Rappeport, Alana Marino and Gina Seyfried accompanied BOA members Lee Anderson, Renee Basil, Bruce Hobbs, Virginia Callahan, Alan Coppola, Elizabeth Liechty, Yoni Palmor and Angela Showalter to PA for a day of meetings and information and idea exchanges.
• Board of Associate member Virginia Callahan generously sponsored KidsPeace to have an exhibitor booth at the Small Business Survival Summit at the Convention Center in Baltimore. It was a huge success. We shared KidsPeace with so many folks and made so many great contacts over a three-day period. We may have a feature story in a woman's magazine, a band for Friday night of the 5K, a few potential foster parents, free sound equipment, a volunteer photographer, a fundraising event with Constant Contact, 50 Success for Teens books, a ton of marketing avenues for TeenCentral.Net, a networking group holding their next meeting at the wine tasting, a wonderful former foster parent willing to recruit families on our behalf and speak at our events....and many more leads. We were also able to participate in classes on “Development for the Non-Profit.” It was awesome!
Auction Supported MD Foster CaBy Erin Doyle
SchulteAuctions.com auctioned off two lots, the proceeds of which benefited KidsPeace Foster Care. The two lots brought in a total of $1,504 for KidsPeace Foster Care in Maryland.
LOT #2 - SHOWALTER ON-FIELD VIP EXPERIENCE
Buck Showalter invited four people to be his guests to meet him and watch batting practice from the field prior to an upcoming home game. Four game tickets are included, and the winner will also receive a jersey signed by Buck Showalter provided by KidsPeace....
LOT #3 - BUCK AND ANGELA SHOWALTER SIGNED KIDSPEACE ORIOLES JERSEYS
The jerseys were worn by Buck and Angela Showalter in the commercial for KidsPeace's Trick-or-Trot 5K and were signed by Buck and Angela following the filming of the commercial.
We are so appreciative that the jerseys were purchased by former KidsPeace Board Directors Chair Joel Newman who then donated the shirts back to KidsPeace Foster Care. We are very grateful to Joel for his generosity.
A big thank you to Ray Schulte at SchulteAuctions.com and to Buck and Angela Showalter!!!
As is tradition, the Maryland and DC foster care programs held a joint holiday potluck party hosted by Grace Community Church on Saturday December 17. This year's festivities included gifts for the children in care, foster parents and their birth children thanks to the generosity of the community. There was also cookie decorating, games, songs and, of course, a visit from Santa.
The Maryland staff and Board of Associates members got up very early to perform on the CBS morning newscast singing "Just Another Manic Monday" to promote the 5K Trick or Trot fundraiser. To see how they did, visit Manic Monday http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/show/manic-monday/
5K Trick or Trot A Huge Success
Despite a crazy October snowstorm, the second annual 5K run and 1-mile walk took place in Baltimore on October 29. Our Maryland associates worked very hard to make this event memorable for everyone who attended. The businesses on and around O’Donnell Square were tremendously generous, providing sponsorships, food, prizes and fun for children. Due to the bad weather, the after race activities were hastily moved indoors to a church where there were prizes for race winners as well as for best costumes and for teams that raised money from team sponsors.
The entire community supported this event, and those who attended were in great spirits. We are thrilled to announce that the race raised $20,000 to help support the KEYS program, which helps teen foster kids prepare for independent living.
National KidsDay Celebration in Baltimore
by Ericka Lee and Levette Dixon
On August 20, 2011, we held our first annual KidsDay event in partnership with Ultrazone at Eastpoint Mall. The theme was Laser Beams and Stars. We had a wonderful time with our foster families pitching in and showing their support for KidsPeace. Some of our youth and staff performed music and poetry while others standing with foster parents, spread the word about KidsPeace. With the help of an excellent DJ, a face painter, balloonist, pizza and cold soft drinks we were able to bring a day of fun to a community while educating them on what we do as an agency and what they can do to support our mission. The day as one foster parent put it, "Was the best KidsPeace family outing she has attended." We hope to keep up that energy.
The teamwork from our KidsPeace staff overall was phenominal! From beginning to end, the support that we received in putting this event together was wonderful. On behalf of the Baltimore and Columbia Offices, we would like to extend Kudos to our Creative Services staff; Shawn Parker, Pat Sullivan, Sharon McCarthy, and Michael Slack, a job well done!. Our Creative services staff worked diligently behind the scenes in helping to get the word out about our event and helping to create masterpieces of advertisement, such as banners, flyers, etc. Every detail captured the moment. Our Acct. Payable Dept. Tonya Green and Rebecca Kleppingerwere very helpful in making sure we received needed funds to cover our expenses in a timely fashion. I wanted to highlight those who worked behind the scenes, because, without them, we couldn't do what we do on the front lines. Everyone's input was greatly appreciated. The smiles on the faces of the children and families made participated in Kids Day, made it an event to remember!
Mr. Gary Reese from Ultrazone of Eastpoint Mall, (a new community partner) sponsored KidsPeace for this event. Words can not express our gratitude to the generosity of Mr. Reese and the Ultrazone staff. His excitement to share Ultrazone with the children of KidsPeace has been a blessing. Mr. Reese's inkind donations of resources, laser tag facility, staff coverage, donations of Pizza and sodas on behalf of Coke USA and Dominos, made our KidsDay a great success!
When the efforts of teamwork, partnerships, family and community support come together, it equals success for our children!
Award-Winning Foster Teen
Fran C*. is special young woman who has been served by KidsPeace FCCP in Columbia, Maryland. Associates from Columbia nominated Fran for a Maryland Association of Resources for Families and Youth. The statement that appears below is what the associates wrote:
KidsPeace, Inc., is proud to nominate Fran C. for the MARFY Youth Achievement Award. Fran surpasses our expectations by consistently achieving her goals and contributing her time to volunteer efforts within our agency. Fran is a young lady driven by her desire to succeed in all that she does. An example of her determination is a goal she set almost a year ago: To graduate from high school early because she saw an opportunity to begin her college career early. Fran achieved this goal and graduated one year early by taking the necessary courses during the school year and summer to n her High School Diploma in August 2010. On the heels of that achievement, Fran enrolled in Howard County Community College and is successfully working on her Associates Degree. Her next goal, after completing her Associates Degree, is to apply to a four-year college to begin her Bachelor’s Degree.
Fran consistently and generously volunteers her time and energy to activities that help youth. Fran has volunteered her time to toy drives and other charity activities through our independent living group KEYS, (KidsPeace Empowering Youth to Succeed), and our first 5K Fun Run in October 2010. She currently serves on the Youth Advisory Group at Baltimore County DSS as a youth Mentor and participates in Family Team Decision-Making Meetings to aid youth who are about to age out of the system. In the midst of working on her personal goals, Fran has found time to participate in several volunteer activities for youth in care.
Fran is a respectful, goal-oriented, and generous young lady. She has made her supporters proud of her achievements and she is always a delight to work with. Despite the challenges she has overcome, and continues to work through, Fran finds the ability to treat others with respect and contribute her energy to the needs of others. For these reasons Fran is also our Kate Snyder Achievement Award nominee.
Fran C. won a $50 award from Maryland Association of Resources for Families and Youth (MARFY) for her achievements during her 18 months with KidsPeace. Everyone who has gotten to know Fran and work beside her is proud of her, and we all wish her continued success.
*Name changed to protect privacy.
Columbia, MD, Foster Children Celebrate Milestones
Erin Doyle from our Columbia, MD, Foster Care office shared some great news about several of their foster kids. Congratulations to the following graduates:
* Tricezette B. and Tonique G. graduated from High School.
* Amani S., Mikel M., and Yesenia R. graduated from Middle School.
* Kaiyah G. and Marshae M. graduated from Elementary School.
* Jashona S. graduated from Kindergarten.
KEYS Participants Attend College Fair
According to Program Manager Alana Marino, on Monday, November 14, as part of the Maryland KidsPeace Empowering Youth to Succeed (KEYS) Program, four youth attended the 2011 National College Fair at the Baltimore Convention Center. This group was a follow up to the Education Planning session that was held on October 24th. The youth were overwhelmed in the beginning, but they quickly became comfortable with asking different schools about their programs, school size, requirements for acceptance and other great questions. They were guided by the KEYS Coordinator, Jocelyn Kennedy, and MSW Intern, Megan Brasauskas through the fair, and the youth completed worksheets with information for at least three schools that they were interested in. They all participated very well, and some youth recognized their friends/classmates at the fair. Through this activity, they were able to learn and understand the process of preparing for college and applying to schools. It was a great experience for the youth to see that college is an option for them and that planning and preparation begins now.
Columbia Foster Families Attend Orioles Game
Program Manager Sandy Rappeport reports that, on June 12, 11 children, 4 foster parents, staff and Board of Associates members attended an Orioles game. They watched the game with their newest Board of Associates member Angela Showalter, who is the wife of the new Manager for the Baltimore Orioles. It was a great time for all even though the Orioles lost. Angela is very enthusiastic about becoming a part of KidsPeace and enjoyed getting to know the kids and foster parents.
Columbia, MD, Foster Children Go Fishing
Over the Fourth of July Weekend, Program Manager for Maryland FCCP Sandy Rappeport and Family Consultant Tom Smith took four foster children from the office out fishing. The idea for this fishing trip was started with one of the office’s more challenging teens. Mike* is a young man who walks around with long hair in his face and is extremely resistant to most of the folks who care for him, including his various foster parents and staff. When Gina Seyfried, Volunteer Coordinator, suggested a fishing trip to him, he lit up and was very open to help plan the charter trip. During a home visit, he ran up to his room to gather his fishing equipment and dumped it all at the feet of Tom and Gina to explain each item and its purpose. We had tapped into his passion, and he engaged himself like never before. He had an active role in working with the fishing captain to organize the trip.
Three of them had never fished before, and none of them had ever been out on a charter boat on the Chesapeake. It was great fun for the kids and the adults. According to Sandy, they caught their limit of rockfish in the first hour, and then changed to fishing for Perch and spot for the next few hours. “We all brought home a lot of fish,” Sandy said.
At one point on the boat, Mike said that he had only been able to sleep about 4 hours over the last 2 or 3 days. When asked why, he responded, "I was so excited for this trip that I couldn't sleep ... it felt like it was the night before Christmas." Coming from a 20 year old with a traumatic past, this was testament to the fact that a small gift or event can have a huge impact on the youth in our care.
Sandy is hoping that the word will spread among the foster kids served by the Columbia FCCP office about this great time. She looks forward to additional foster kids asking if they can go out fishing on another trip.
*Name changed to protect privacy
Breakfast with Santa
By Gina Seyfried
One of our BOA members, Jacqueline Edwards, called to offer a couple of our kids a chance to attend "Breakfast with Santa" at the Marriott Waterfront, a beautiful hotel in Baltimore. Thanks to the hard work our KidsPeace associate Erin Doyle, one of our Foster Moms was contacted and able to bring 2two of our children to the event; they had a blast.
This is what the Foster Mom shared:
OMG......This was the Best Breakfast w/ Santa that I have ever attended! And I have been to several....THE KIDS ABSOLUTELY ADORED THIS EVENT!
We arrived at exactly 8 a.m., and we were one of the last families to get PUT OUT! LOL It was AWESOME.....Sammy* and Lucy* had a BALL! They were exhausted and passed out on the way home since we stayed the whole time and WE THANK YOU AGAIN for allowing us the opportunity to enjoy this event…. Again we thank you and Love You.......SMOOCHIES KIDS PEACE!
*Names have been changed to protect privacy.
Baltimore FCCP Associate Helps Out
Regional Manager Diane Sancilio recognized the work of one of our family consultants, Jamal Raheem, from the Baltimore, MD FCCP. Ray Schulte, a Board of Associates member and owner of Shulte Auctions, had invited our youth, staff and families to volunteer for a weekend with several well known professionals to help with getting autographs for the public. These professional athletes included the Ravens' Ray Lewis and Ray Rice.
Upon hearing about this invitation, Jamal reached out to one of his youth who loves the Ravens and was eager to be a part of this event. That evening, however, at the very last minute, this young man contacted Jamal to say that he couldn't make it. It is fair to say that most of us on a Friday night would have left it at that. However, Jamal did something quite extraordinary. He began calling other youth on his caseload to see if there was anyone who would be willing to help out with the evening's event. Jamal was able to get hold of another youth (we will call him Damian) and even picked him up and took him and stayed at this event. Damian met Ray Lewis and Ray Rice and helped people get autographs from these beloved athletes. Furthermore, Damian got to spend time with these athletes and said it was one of the best days of his life. Jamal said that he wanted to ensure that KidsPeace honored its commitment to Mr. Schulte and did not want KidsPeace to look bad.
Diane commended Jamal Raheem for going above and beyond to ensure that at least one of our youth got to experience such a wonderful opportunity and to promotAe KidsPeace in the best of lights. Jamal is truly dedicated to the children and KidsPeace.