As we embark on a new year, we want to begin 2014 by thanking our generous and compassionate community for making the holiday season so special for all our Family Scholar House families. It is impossible to thank each and every individual, family, office or class who provided Christmas presents for a record number of FSH families through our Adopt-a-Family program, or each church or business that collected toys, books or winter clothing to keep of parent scholars and their children protected from this bitterly cold weather, or each volunteer who assisted with our Santa Shop, holiday parties or decorating our campuses for the holiday season. We are blessed by you, and we hope that sharing the holiday season with our families made the season all-the-more magical for you and your families!
Each year we are moved by the gratitude of our student parents, who without the assistance of our community would be unable to provide Christmas gifts for their children. They are awe-struck and encouraged by the support they receive to work harder to earn their degree and give back to the community through their time, talent and treasure.
This year, one of our post-program participants, Becca Dunkley, was able to complete her transformation from recipient of holiday assistance to provider of support and was enthusiastic to share what that experience meant to her…
As a child, I never imagined there would come a time in my life when I would be a single mother of two beautiful children – with unstable housing and no way to get ahead. In 2010, that is exactly the situation that I found myself in, and I was hopeless. In an effort to find a way out of my situation, I reenrolled in college and found the greatest blessing I could have asked for – Family Scholar House. I had found hope. I put my name on the waiting list, started attending their seminars and functions, and called to check-in almost daily! I was determined to become part of this program. With the support and guidance of the staff at FSH, I became a participant and moved into my apartment at Louisville Scholar House.
I will never forget the amount of encouragement and support that I received from the community, specifically at Christmastime. There was absolutely no way that my children would have received gifts from Santa if it weren’t for the generosity of the community. One of the most humbling experiences I have ever had was opening gifts – from total strangers- on Christmas morning along with my children. The smiles, laughter and fun that we experienced that morning would have NEVER occurred if it weren’t for the HUGE hearts of those in this community.
Now, as a post-program participant of Family Scholar House, it is an absolute honor to be in a position to give back! I am currently working for the University of Louisville, and my office was blessed to adopt a FSH family for Christmas. The tears, laughter and love that were experienced on that Christmas morning in 2010 are back again. It is an amazing feeling to be able to give back to a program that so graciously gave to me. If it weren’t for the support from FSH and the tools for success that were handed to me – in order to become the best woman and parent I could become – none of this would be possible.
To the current participants of FSH, please know that – IT IS POSSIBLE! AND YOU ARE WORTH IT!