News and Updates from CYFS
Teen Makes Donation to CYFS, Hopes to Inspire Others
A local teen is among the latest individuals to be added to the list of founding partners at The Center for Youth and Family Solutions (CYFS). Nathaniel Prather of Pekin contacted CYFS to inquire about donating to the agency, after witnessing the boys at Guardian Angel Residential Home for Youth playing outside. “I’ve always wanted to give back to others in my community, and when I saw them playing basketball one day, I knew I wanted to learn about how I could help them,” said Prather. “I hope that my donation inspires other to get involved with CYFS.”
On June 26, Prather, who will be a senior this fall at Pekin High School, made his $1,000 donation – money he had saved from birthdays and Christmas – to CYFS Executive Director Trish Fox, splitting it between Guardian Angel and the general agency fund, to help all CYFS programs. “This young man has shown incredible generosity to others in his community,” commented Fox. “We are humbled and grateful for Nathaniel’s contribution, and his selflessness toward others his age.
With his donation, Nathaniel joins a group dedicated and generous individuals, families, foundations, organizations, and businesses who will be forever listed as founding partners on the CYFS website, for their part in helping our organization get its start. “I’m proud to be a founding partner; to be able to look back years from now and say I was here at the beginning, is something special,” added Prather.For a full list of our Founding Partners, please visit our website founding partners.
United Way Power of the Purse Contribution Helps CYFS Continue Funding Backpack Nutrition Program
The CYFS Food Backpack Nutrition Program recently received a financial boost that will allow us to continue funding the program for Peoria-area school children. A contribution of $7,800 from the 2015 Heart of Illinois United Way Power of the Purse fundraiser will be used to purchase food backpacks for the upcoming fall semester at Jamieson and Trewyn Schools in Peoria. With these funds and the existing funds from the 2014 ADM grant, CYFS will be able to provide 132 children with backpacks for the 2015-16 school year.
The Food Backpack Nutrition Program was started in 2014 in partnership with Peoria’s District #150, to help meet the needs of area school children receiving free and reduced school meals, who might not otherwise be getting their nutritional needs met over the weekends and when school is not in session. Trewyn School (1)“We are grateful for the continued support from Power of the Purse,” said CYFS YFCOS Program Director Tim Glancy. “The number of those needing our help has continued to grow, and these additional funds are making it possible for us to serve even more children this school year than we have in the past.”
Prepared by a nutritionist, the Ziploc bags include easy-to-prepare food to eat over the weekend, and cost CYFS $4.11 per student. To donate to the CYFS Backpack Nutrition Program, and help CYFS continue providing local school children much needed nutrition, please contact us by e-mail or call 309-323-6600!
Community Area Projects Offer Youth Fun and Education
The kids and staff participating in the Bloomington Normal and Tazewell Community Area Projects have been busy this summer with a variety of activities. Thank you to everyone that has helped with our camp activities this summer!
The kids attending BNAP activities have participated in nutrition education, stranger safety, healthy living, and water safety classes. Thank you to the U of I Cooperative Extension CATCH program, Bloomington-Normal Police Department, the Girl Scouts, The Prairie Community Foundation, and the Department of Healthcare Services for their participation and contributions to BNAP.
The TCAP kids in both East Peoria and Pekin have made their own tie-dyed shirts, participated in bowling, swimming, movies, and trips to Kartville in Peoria. In addition, kids attending the East Peoria Camp enjoyed a Chiefs baseball game and received pedometers as a part of an $800 grant from the United Way. Each child has been keeping track of his or her steps this summer, and the boy and girl with the most steps taken won a bike at the Family Day Celebration on July 22. We want to thank everyone that has contributed to the camps in Pekin and East Peoria this year, including Chick-fil-A in Peoria, Ernie’s Family Restaurant in Pekin, United Methodist Church in East Peoria, the BNAP and TCAP photos (4)City of East Peoria, and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation.
Macomb Office Holds Summer Camp
The staff at the CYFS office in Macomb recently wrapped up their first Camp Quest Summer Camp. Held at WIU’s Horn Field Campus, June 2-4, the camp offered local youth team building activities, leadership/independent living skills, conflict resolution, and respect building, and physical challenge activities. Approximately 25 campers and staff participated in the three-day camp, which was made possible through the Macomb office’s annual Krispy Kreme sale and Running Games 5K.
Visit the Camp Quest Photo Gallery.
Turnbull Joins CYFS as New RSVP Project Director
CYFS welcomes Jeff Turnbull as Project Director of the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program. Jeff comes to our agency with several years of experience operating this program. He has worked in the Peoria area for several years, most recently as the Chief Operating Officer and Vice President of Community Relations at the Friendship House.
As the new administrator of RSVP, CYFS will find volunteer opportunities for adults, ages 55 and older, in the areas of Healthy Futures, Capacity Building, Education, and Environmental Stewardship. Volunteers will choose from a variety of opportunities with partner organizations, agencies, and schools in Peoria and Tazewell Counties. RSVP offers a diverse range of volunteer activities that serve communities to create measurable impact, benefit volunteers through the service experience, and create community capacity.
Non-profits in Peoria and Tazewell Counties wishing to become a part of the RSVP volunteer network may contact Jeff Turnbull at 309-323-6620 for more information.