Friends of the Children provides the most vulnerable children in high poverty neighborhoods with a professional mentor who stays with them not just for a short time, but for 12 full years. The organization opened in 1993 and has grown from serving 24 children to now over 400 children. It’s a program that works: 85% have graduated or received their GEDs, 90% have avoided the criminal justice system, and 95% have avoided early parenting.
I recently had the chance to tour the new Windermere Kitchen at Friends of the Children in East County, funded by our Windermere Foundation. What an amazing space!
I have written many times about how proud I am to be part of a company that supports our community in so many meaningful ways, and this project really hit “home” with me. I have always felt a strong connection to the kitchen, not only because of my love of cooking, but also because the kitchen is so often the central place of gathering in our homes--a place where memories are made.
The Windermere Kitchen provides such a place to some of the most at-risk children in our area. It is fully equipped, warm, welcoming, and provides a safe space for learning, studying and socializing.
I never think twice about making a donation to the Windermere Foundation in each of my client’s names. It’s something I have done since I joined the company over 11 year ago. But many times I don’t have the opportunity to experience the impact of our Foundation firsthand, my visit to Friends of the Children was certainly a lovely exception.