Dear Friends,

What each of us does every day has an effect – an effect on a child in a classroom, on a family, and on each other. No matter how small, our choices have meaning. Together, these actions ripple out to create moments that impact individuals and groups, bind us together, and in the best of circumstances, create community.

These ripples can cause changes in community and changes in heart. This past year, I have seen them swell through the work of our staff, the actions of our community members, and the commitment of our board. Without being asked, the remarkable people connected to Kinship Center sought out ways to strengthen our community at large. Their presence was felt like a hand on our back - a constant reminder saying, “Do what you need to do – we are here for you.”

When children were separated from their families at the border, our staff reached out with the singular question, “How can we help?” In response, our employees stepped in as mental health experts, lending their voices to the chorus of advocates demanding change.

When our education teams saw that Seneca schools were in need of sensory tools to help youth deescalate safely, our partners from Kaiser Permanente built the Thrive Room, an immersive sensory space at James Baldwin Academy that strengthens our ability to provide truly Unconditional Education.

When young people in our programs noticed areas in need of improvement, but lacked a clear roadmap for how to effect change, the award-winning members of our Youth Advisory Board created and expanded a youth-led community to support each other and support us in our work.

How lucky are we to be surrounded by people whose first question is, “How can we help?”

The rippling effect of the actions of our staff, our board, our corporate partners, and our broader community, has strengthened Kinship Center as an organization, and in doing so, strengthened the kids, families, and communities with whom we work. We are all connected to each other, connected to our shared community, and connected to a broader vision of the world we can build together. If you share our vision, please consider joining us by making an investment to support our work this year.

With respect and admiration,

Ken Berrick

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