Providing an opportunity for every person
to help children heal, learn and thrive.

Board Member Spotlight: Christina Jackson

My name is Christina Jackson and I live in Long Beach, CA with my husband, 4-year-old son and two dogs. My professional background is in graphic design, but I have developed a passion for interior design and I hope to work in that field once my son goes to school full time. I love books (I’m an avid reader, book hoarder and book club attender), fine art and dance parties in the kitchen with my son. I’m also a cancer survivor! The fact that I got a second chance at life heightened my commitment to helping others, especially kids.

I first discovered the Children’s Foundation of America (CFA) by accident! For years, my mom and I had been making Christmas stockings and Easter baskets for kids at various local shelters and similar organizations. It was a great experience, but also very anonymous. I wanted to channel my efforts toward a more specific demographic, specifically foster kids, and I wanted to work with an organization that I could become personally involved with. I Googled local foster care organizations and Trinity Youth Services popped up on my screen, so I contacted them to offer my services. That year, my mom and I created 32 Christmas gift bags for the kids at Trinity’s Long Beach office. My involvement quickly grew into Easter baskets, back to school items and birthday gifts. Pretty soon after that, Becky and the fabulous people at CFA (which supports Trinity Youth Services) asked me to become a member of the board of trustees.

The thing I love most about CFA is their long-term commitment to help kids heal from the traumatic effects of abuse, neglect or abandonment. They are in it with these kids for the long haul, whether it be residential programs, foster care support or community-based programs. I specifically love the fact that we offer scholarships to teens aging out of foster care in order to support their studies and growth into healthy, productive adults.

My personal aspiration is to help increase funding for the arts-based therapies and outings that the kids experience. Art and creativity in all its forms is healing, cathartic and joyful. It has the power to liberate the spirit. And oftentimes, great art finds its inspiration in great pain. If anyone deserves exposure to the arts, it’s these kids. Who knows what seeds of inspiration might take root in their hearts? It’s my hope that the children supported by CFA will be able to experience hands-on art based therapy, plus outings to theater and dance productions, live music, museums, culinary classes, etc!

So far, my favorite experience happened while I was attending last year’s Christmas party for Trinity’s Long Beach foster kids. I made friends with two little boys who were in the process of being adopted by a lovely couple sitting at my table. The boys were brothers and they were adorable. The two of them ran off to the cookie decorating table and returned with some cookies especially for me. They were piled so high with heaps of gooey frosting and candy, you could barely tell there was a cookie underneath! Needless to say I ate every last bite of those cookies as my new friends proudly watched!


Christina Jackson, Board Member
In 2016, Christina became a board member of the Children’s Foundation of America as a result of her involvement with partner organization, Trinity Youth Services. Christina is an adoptive mom and a cancer survivor. Getting a second chance at life only encouraged her more to help others. Christina helps the Foundation with organizing toy donations, doing graphic design, finding deserving scholarship applicants, assisting with events and much more.

 


 

Volunteer Spotlight: Sophia Amado

This month’s Volunteer Spotlight focus on Sophia Amado, who lives in Rancho Cucamonga. She recently helped the Children’s Foundation of America (CFA) by making blankets for foster youth.

What are your favorite hobbies?

I like to go hiking, I like to go to festivals, concerts, and just hanging out with my friends.

Where did you go to school?

I went to school at Studio 7 in Covina and I majored in fashion merchandising.

What activities do you participate in with CFA?

Blanket making for foster children, passing out fliers during awareness campaigns and helping to organize the warehouse

What inspired you to volunteer?

I really like the organization and the work that they do. I also like the fact that it deals with children, which is our future.

What do you find most rewarding about volunteering?

What’s most rewarding is that it’s for a good cause, that it gives me a sense of fulfillment and it just helps our community. It’s good to help your community and to get outside of yourself sometimes. The best way to do that is by doing something that you feel passion for.

Anything else you’d like to share with fellow volunteers?

Keep on volunteering. It’s such great and fulfilling work that we do here and I’m sure they appreciate it.

Be the Difference

If you would like to volunteer at the Children’s Foundation of America like Sophia, call 1-800-KIDS-730 or email volunteer@trinityys.org.


Sasha Chavez, AmeriCorps VIP Intern
Sasha is volunteering with the Children’s Foundation of America as our AmeriCorps VIP (Volunteer Infrastructure Program) Intern. This mutually beneficial partnership allows Sasha to work hand-in-hand with the Children’s Foundation of America to develop and expand the quality of the volunteer opportunities to address the unmet needs of our local community. Sasha has been a wonderful asset to our team. She creates content for our social media, assists with our community outreach and has even helped by coordinating fundraisers and volunteer opportunities. She lives locally to our headquarters in Claremont and studies public relations and marketing at the University of La Verne. When she isn’t volunteering with the Foundation, she enjoys reading, being outdoors and spending time with my friends and family.


Volunteer Spotlight: Delilah DeBillis

What are your hobbies outside of volunteering?

My hobbies include going hiking and spending time with my family and friends. I also love Pinterest, so I do a lot of arts and crafts. I also love to eat, and I after eat, I love to sleep and take naps anytime that I can.

What activities do you participate in with the Children’s Foundation of America?

I’ve mostly done awareness activities that include assembling the flyers and going out to the community. We then pass them out and spread awareness about the children and options on how people can help.

What inspired you to volunteer with the Children’s Foundation of America?

I found this opportunity on volunteermatch.org and when I read the mission statement about helping children it just really hit home, because I believe that children are our future and if we can make an impact on just one child, it can make a huge difference. That child that you made an impact on, maybe they can impact another person and another person, and eventually, you might have hundreds of lives that are changed for the better.

What do you find most rewarding about volunteering with the Children’s Foundation of America?

I think it’s very rewarding helping a child who may be in need and just letting them know that they are important and significant.

What is your favorite memory from volunteering with the Children’s Foundation of America?

My favorite memory from volunteering is during child abuse awareness month. It was such a great feeling to be spreading awareness for a great cause. While we were passing out the flyers this woman accepted our flyer and was really happy and commented on how awesome it was that we were doing this. It made me happy because it was good to know that we impacted at least one person.

Why would you encourage others to volunteer?

I would encourage others to volunteer because it allows you to really understand the community that you live in. I think it’s really great to understand other people; where they come from and how they think and what you can do to support that. We are all living on this earth together, so we might as well celebrate it, enjoy each other and help each other out to make the best of what we have here. It’s also just amazing when you can make an impact or just make someone smile for a day. Whether that’s by just saying hi or passing out fliers, or doing arts and crafts with a child or educating a parent about something like foster care, I think that’s beautiful within itself. So definitely volunteer, even if it’s just for an hour. It makes all the difference.

Anything else you’d like to share with your fellow volunteers?

Children are our future and they also seem to be the most vulnerable due to their age and dependency on others. Because of this, I think it’s vital to always communicate and look at the well-being of the child as a whole. If I can provide a smile, confidence, comfort, financial or even housing stability, then that can make a world of a difference in a child’s future and even their mindset! Children’s Foundation of America allows me to make that impact and I look forward to volunteering more because of this.

Be the Difference

If you would like to volunteer at the Children’s Foundation of America like Delilah, call 1-800-KIDS-730 or email volunteer@trinityys.org.


Sasha Chavez, AmeriCorps VIP Intern
Sasha is volunteering with the Children’s Foundation of America as our AmeriCorps VIP (Volunteer Infrastructure Program) Intern. This mutually beneficial partnership allows Sasha to work hand-in-hand with the Children’s Foundation of America to develop and expand the quality of the volunteer opportunities to address the unmet needs of our local community. Sasha has been a wonderful asset to our team. She creates content for our social media, assists with our community outreach and has even helped by coordinating fundraisers and volunteer opportunities. She lives locally to our headquarters in Claremont and studies public relations and marketing at the University of La Verne. When she isn’t volunteering with the Foundation, she enjoys reading, being outdoors and spending time with my friends and family.


 

Volunteer Spotlight: Sasha Chavez

For this month’s Volunteer Spotlight, we would like to introduce you to our AmeriCorps V.I.P. (Volunteer Infrastructure Program) Intern, Sasha Chavez. This mutually beneficial partnership allows Sasha to work hand in hand with the Children’s Foundation of America (CFA) to develop and expand the quality of the volunteer opportunities to address the unmet needs of our local community. Sasha has been a wonderful asset to our team. She creates content for our social media, assists with our community outreach and has even helped by coordinating a fundraiser.

Sasha lives near our headquarters in Claremont and studies public relations and marketing at the University of La Verne. When she isn’t volunteering with CFA, she enjoys reading, being outdoors and spending time with my friends and family.

How did you first get involved with CFA?

I got involved with CFA a couple months ago while I was searching for an internship on the ULV career portal. I came across CFA’s communications intern listing and decided to apply.

What has surprised you most about working with CFA?

Everyone is so supportive of each other and I believe that really helps to push the mission of CFA forward.

How did it make you feel to be part of organizing a CFA fundraiser?

This past Tuesday we had a fundraiser at Pizza N Such in Claremont. It felt really great to be surrounded by people who want to give to a good cause. The energy in the room was so uplifting.

What do you wish other people knew about CFA?

I wish they knew that even a small effort goes a long way. Something as small as writing a birthday card for a child or volunteering in any capacity does so much.

What would you tell someone who is thinking about getting involved?

I would encourage them to do it. It feels great to see how much of a difference you can make.

How would someone describe you?

I would hope that I would be described as smart, helpful and kind.

All of us at the Children’s Foundation of America would agree with that description. Our team is truly grateful to work with such amazing volunteers and to have the opportunity to partner with AmeriCorps. To volunteer at the Children’s Foundation of America, call 1-800-KIDS-730 or email volunteer@trinityys.org.


Aaron Henry, Community Outreach Associate
Aaron’s role is keeping the day-to-day functions of the Foundation office running efficiently by answering phone calls and emails, taking in and recording donations, coordinating volunteer activities and assisting with outreach and events. Aaron is a musician and an art enthusiast. On weekends, Aaron instructs music at the Claremont Community School of Music and assists at the nonprofit’s office.
Tel: 1-800-543-7730 | Email: volunteer@trinityys.org


 

Volunteer Spotlight: Tamera Guarnieri

This month’s volunteer spotlight focuses on Tamera Guarnieri, who lives in Upland and recently helped out at our booth for the Claremont Pie Festival!

What are your favorite pastimes?

My favorite pastimes are tinkering in my garden, reading, listening to most genres of music, dancing and watching sports. I enjoy playing card and board games. Lately I have been addicted to Magic Puzzles on my tablet. Family dinners on the patio, a glass of wine with a girlfriend, or walking on the beach are my mental refreshers.

Where did you go to school and what was your major?

After high school I attended Mt. San Antonio to begin a degree in fashion merchandising. The road in life is not always straight and so through the zig and zags I took several classes at Chaffey College in various disciplines. It was not until my 40’s when I took some computer classes at California Computer School that I found the road less bumpy.

What activities do you participate in with Children’s Foundation of America?

I have headed the Holiday Heroes program at my company for six years. Our employees really enjoy purchasing gifts for the kids. As the box gets fuller and fuller everyone “ooh’s” and “aah’s” while remembering their own holiday gifts as children. I believe the holiday spirit is best felt when giving joy to children.

Recently I stepped outside of this once-a-year program and volunteered to man the booth at the Claremont Pie Festival. What a great day I had! It was fun to see the faces of attendees as they won a prize by spinning the prize wheel. Talking to passers-by about the Children’s Foundation of America and the wonderful work they do was rewarding. Informing others about this important foundation will hopefully spur them on to volunteer themselves or donate to a great cause.

What inspired you to volunteer with Children’s Foundation of America?

As the mother of three, a former school volunteer and Girl Scout leader I have a special place in my heart for children. It grieves me that kids and teens are put into circumstances beyond their control and that these situations have such impact on their futures. It is wonderful to know that there are loving, giving people ready to help with this plight and find solutions that have the children’s best interest at heart. I want to be part of this solution.

What do you find most rewarding about volunteering with Children’s Foundation of America?

The smiles on the children’s faces at the holiday party would be reward enough. Knowing I am helping the Foundation carry on its mission is a close second.

What’s your favorite memory from volunteering with Children’s Foundation of America?

One year this teen asked for boxers and socks on his holiday gift request. All the other children had asked for an Xbox or bike or Barbie doll, but he had only asked for essential items. I took his card and fulfilled his wish along with jeans, and shirts, and other items. I hope he liked everything because I really wanted to do right by this guy.

Why would you encourage others to volunteer?

We have so much in our lives. Even if you feel you have a little it is probably more than a lot of others have. If you have time to watch a TV show you have an hour to volunteer. Can you make some phone calls? Fold a few flyers? If you are going to a festival anyway why not spend an hour or two working the booth before or after. It makes you feel good to do something for others. It shows your children how to care for people outside of their family and friends. This community of life comes together when we support each other. Get outside of your comfort zone and volunteer!

Is there anything else you would like to share with your fellow volunteers?

Look around, surf the net, check at church, see what volunteer opportunities best suit your abilities. If you love children and working with others as I do then the Children’s Foundation of America might just be the thing you’re missing in your life.

Be the Difference

Thank you to Tamera for volunteering to Be the Difference!  If you would like to volunteer at the Children’s Foundation of America, call 1-800-KIDS-730 or email volunteer@trinityys.org.


Aaron Henry, Community Outreach Associate
Aaron’s role is keeping the day-to-day functions of the Foundation office running efficiently by answering phone calls and emails, taking in and recording donations, coordinating volunteer activities and assisting with outreach and events. Aaron is a musician and an art enthusiast. On weekends, Aaron instructs music at the Claremont Community School of Music and assists at the nonprofit’s office.
Tel: 1-800-543-7730 | Email: volunteer@trinityys.org


Volunteer Spotlight: G.G. Crawley

This month’s volunteer spotlight focuses on G.G. Crawley, who lives in Upland and works at the School of Social Work at Cal State San Bernardino. G.G. recently helped in our warehouse taking inventory of toys, which will be used throughout the year for birthday gifts for children in foster care.

 What are your favorite pastimes?

Playing with my grandchildren, reading books to them, putting together puzzles and I really enjoy acting in plays.

Where did you go to school and what was your major?

I graduated from Southern University in Social Welfare and from Louisiana State University (LSU) with my master’s degree in social work.

What inspired you to volunteer at the Children’s Foundation of America?

Children are dear to my heart and any organization that extend services to making the life of a child better, I will to offer support.

What do you find most rewarding about volunteering with us so far?

The fact that I can work with a team of other volunteers and get a job accomplished.

What’s your favorite memory from volunteering at the Foundation?

Right now, it is sorting toys in the warehouse and documenting each item. It was great seeing young students spend time assisting also.

Why would you encourage others to volunteer?

There is an intrinsic value in serving others. The feeling is unexplainable. We will generally volunteer for things we would not consider being paid for as a job and feel really good about the experience.

Is there anything else you would like to share with your fellow volunteers?

Volunteers are essential participants in operation of many nonprofit organizations. If you can help out, the organization is always grateful and appreciative.

Thanks to G.G. for volunteering to Be the Difference. If you would like to volunteer at the Children’s Foundation of America, call 1-800-KIDS-730 or email volunteer@trinityys.org.


Aaron Henry, Community Outreach Associate
Aaron’s role is keeping the day-to-day functions of the Foundation office running efficiently by answering phone calls and emails, taking in and recording donations, coordinating volunteer activities and assisting with outreach and events. Aaron is a musician and an art enthusiast. On weekends, Aaron instructs music at the Claremont Community School of Music and assists at the nonprofit’s office.
Tel: 1-800-543-7730 | Email: volunteer@trinityys.org


 

Volunteer Spotlight: Joanne Sanchez

Volunteer Spotlight

Joanne Sanchez

This month’s volunteer spotlight is Joanne Sanchez of Chino, CA. We assigned her to serve as volunteer administrative assistant at Trinity Youth Services’ Rancho Cucamonga office.

What are your favorite pastimes?

My favorite pastimes are creating art, working out and spending time with my three dogs.

Where did you go to school and what was your major?

I currently attend Irvine Valley College where I will be receiving my AA in Economics, but I will also be transferring this year to Cal Poly Pomona.

What activities do you participate in at Trinity Youth Services?

I assist the social workers with improving organization, helping them locate information and assisting them with filing to ensure everything is up to date.

What inspired you to volunteer at Trinity Youth Services?

I was inspired by the work the employees do to give back to the community and ensure the safety of the children.

What do you find most rewarding about volunteering?

I find the knowledge of how I am making a difference very rewarding and encouraging.

What’s your favorite memory from volunteering at Trinity Youth Services?

My favorite memories are the individual looks of appreciation I receive from those I help all around the office.

Why would you encourage others to volunteer?

I would encourage others to volunteer if they are looking for an activity or opportunity to be of service to those who both may need and deserve it. This is a rewarding way to also gain experience for different career fields.

Is there anything else you would like to share with your fellow volunteers?

Even though you’re a volunteer, give it the best you’ve got and treat it like any other job opportunity. The hardworking employees will thank you.

Thanks to Joanne for volunteering to Be the Difference. If you would like to volunteer at the Children’s Foundation of America, call 1-800-KIDS-730 or email volunteer@trinityys.org.

 

Aaron Henry, Community Outreach Associate
Aaron’s role is keeping the day-to-day functions of the Foundation office running efficiently by answering phone calls and emails, taking in and recording donations, coordinating volunteer activities and assisting with outreach and events. Aaron is a musician and an art enthusiast. On weekends, Aaron instructs music at the Claremont Community School of Music and assists at the nonprofit’s office.
Tel: 1-800-543-7730 | Email: volunteer@trinityys.org

Volunteer Spotlight: Aniketa Shinde

Volunteer

Volunteer

Aniketa Shinde

At the Children’s Foundation of America, we love our volunteers. Those who volunteer give their time to help us fulfill our mission to help children who have been victims of abuse, neglect or abandonment to heal, learn and thrive. We couldn’t do it without you! This month, we are featuring Aniketa Shinde, who has volunteered with us for two years.

Where do you live?

Duarte, CA

What are your favorite pastimes?

My hobbies include reading, hiking, biking, watching TV and movies, dancing, sewing and volunteering.

Where did you go to school and what was your major?

I went to UCLA for my undergraduate degree in Physics and UC Irvine for my doctoral degree in Physics.

What compelled you to volunteer for Children’s Foundation of America?

I grew up in Covina and went to Charter Oak High School. Now that I am back in the area I wanted to find ways to get back into the types of volunteering I did as a high school student. I remember having a lot of fun volunteer gift wrapping at the West Covina Mall (as it was known in the 1990’s) but I do not remember what organization it was for. In 2015, I was able to find gift wrapping opportunities on VolunteerMatch with Children’s Foundation of America.

What do you find most rewarding about volunteering at Children’s Foundation of America?

I find it very rewarding to provide a service to others (wrapping their gifts) while raising money for children in the foster care system. I enjoy the creativity of wrapping gifts and will never forgot the nonstop gift wrapping session on December 24, 2016. It was hectic and chaotic at times, but really fun as well.

Anything else you would like to share with your fellow volunteers?

I’ve had a great time gift wrapping the past two years. All of the volunteers I’ve worked with have been hard-working and easy to get along with, thank you!

Thanks to Aniketa for volunteering to Be the Difference. If you would like to volunteer at the Children’s Foundation of America, call 1-800-KIDS-730 or email volunteer@trinityys.org.