It takes a lot of resources to raise a child. They outgrow shoes and bicycles. They need an education, hot meals and a warm bed. For many parents it takes a village of family members, neighbors and close friends who can step up and help. For Windwood Family Services, caring for 27 boys absolutely takes a village.
The children who live at Windwood Farms in Awendaw have been abandoned, abused and traumatized. Windwood provides a safe and nurturing environment for boys ages 6 to 16. They attend school and receive therapy sessions on site, and the farm is staffed around the clock.
Some will be reunited with their families after months of healing. Many others will go into foster care or be adopted. All of them need daily care – and as any caregiver or parent knows, that takes money.
The cost of caring for a child increases every year, unfortunately the money our state sets aside to care for vulnerable children does not. In order for us to provide the high quality of services our boys need and deserve Windwood turns to its village of donors around the Charleston region for assistance in meeting our financial needs.
“These gifts allow us to prove to our kids they are loved, cared for and believed in,” Vanderbilt says. “Your gifts allow us to continue to heal the effects of abuse and neglect just as we have for the past 32 years. It really does take a village, and we are asking that you be that for them.”
Here’s how a monetary donation makes a lasting difference in the lives of the boys at Windwood:
- $25 covers an outing for one boy
- $50 provides school uniforms for one boy
- $100 provides a week’s worth of meals for one boy
- $500 covers all the therapy costs for one boy for a week
In addition to the 27 boys on the farm, Windwood serves another 1,000 families around the Charleston region with its community-based prevention services and clinic based mental health programs. Staff members provide emotional support through in-home interventions, teaching techniques and helping decrease life stressors that may lead to criminal behaviors, domestic violence and substance abuse.
Often these families also need basic necessities like diapers, formula, children’s clothing, furniture and toiletries. Donations of gently used clothing and furniture, diapers, bottles and baby formula are always accepted at Windwood along with monetary donations. Donors also can give gift cards to Walmart and staff can purchase items as needed throughout the year.
In order to give families in need a family night out or take the boys at the farm on an outing Vanderbilt says gift cards for the movie theater, tickets to sporting events and attractions, and gift cards for McDonalds and Chick-fil-A are also appreciated.
“Everybody is in the giving mode in the holidays but come January and February we have the exact same needs we had in December for clothing and other necessities,” Vanderbilt says. We are reaching out to our community to remember us throughout the year.
To be part of the village and make a donation, visit www.WindwoodFarm.org.