Get to Know: Child & Family Agency of Southeastern Connecticut Lynn Fairfield-Sonn, firstname.lastname@example.org What is the essence of how your agency serves the community? The mission of Child and Family Agency of Southeastern Connecticut is to promote the well-being and development of all children and their families, in particular to give priority to the unmet needs of children lacking physical, emotional and intellectual care and nurturing. Programs deal with child abuse prevention, the treatment of family violence, teen pregnancy, children’s health care, childcare, parent education and children’s mental health. These services include: out-of-school programming at the B.P. Learned Mission in New London, school-based health and social service centers in New London, Groton, Norwich, and at the Friendship School in Waterford. Further, the agency offers child and family counseling at centers located in Essex, New London and Groton, child care at centers located in New London and Groton, and several home based counseling and child development programs that serve children and their families across the region. What does the agency actually do, and, for who? Last year, over 17,000 children were served in 79 towns in New London, Middlesex and New Haven Counties, the Child & Family Agency service region. Child & Family has over 170 staff – social workers, teachers, psychologists, nurse practitioners, administrators, and support staff – dedicated to helping children at 28 service centers. A non-profit agency, program funding comes from private, state, United Way and federal sources. Fees for service reflect costs. A sliding scale assures that no one will be refused service for financial reasons – and no one ever is refused due to financial circumstances. What are some hands-on specific volunteering opportunities most needed? Join an auxiliary! In 1944, a group of 12 women organized to aid the Agency and its work, creating the auxiliaries, which are now organized in six areas: Essex, Lyme/Old Lyme, East Lyme, New London, Groton and Mystic/Noank/Stonington. The over 600 Auxiliary members are a diverse group of volunteers who give generously of their time and talent through caring for children, fundraising events, and educational services to further the mission of the Agency. New members and donors are always welcome. There are also volunteer opportunities at our childcare and afterschool care centers. Any other ways people can help? Time, treasure, and talent is always appreciated! At this time of year, you might want to consider our Polar Express Program. How It Works: Our direct service staff recommends client families that would truly benefit from the Child & Family Agency Project Polar Express. Each client family is asked to provide us with wish items that they need or could benefit from. Sponsors are then matched with a family and given their first names, ages and wish lists. Sponsors then deliver the gifts to one of our offices on certain dates and the clinicians then deliver them to the families in need. Email or call us and let us know that you or your group would like to help a family this year. You will be registered and matched with a family to sponsor and sent all of the information to start. Your sponsorship will include shopping, wrapping, placing names and gift tags on each gift and delivering your gift bag to our New London administrative office on the assigned delivery dates in December. Or if you prefer making a financial contribution to the program, we have Auxiliary volunteer shoppers who will happily do the shopping and gift wrapping for families you support. Checks can be made out to “Child & Family Agency” and mailed to: Project Polar Express; Child & Family Agency; 255 Hempstead Street; New London, CT 06320. You may call 860-443-2896 x1406 – Erica Morales for Polar Express or email her at email@example.com. Monetary donations are always appreciated as funding for our sliding scale fees in counseling and afterschool and childcare do not cover all the costs associated with providing those services. Any gifts are greatly appreciated in helping us provide services! If you have any questions, please call Lynn Fairfield-Sonn, Director of Development at 860-443-2896 x1403 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.