Reflections on 2018

Last week, we had the pleasure of hosting a holiday KINnect Event for siblings in Eugene. We were at a swimming pool. All of the siblings were splashing around and having a great time, but one set stood out. A brother arrived a few minutes before his sister. When he got out to the pool deck and realized his sister wasn’t there yet, he must have asked his care provider a hundred times when his sister would be arriving. When his sister walked out of the locker room, he screamed her name and ran (not lifeguard approved!) to give her a hug. They spent the next two hours having pool noodle fights, pretending to be mermaids, negotiating over how many cookies they were allowed to have, and smiling from ear to ear! When it was time to go, the sister could not hug her brother tight enough! As they both got into their respective cars they said “See you soon!” with big smiles on their faces.

These are the moments our volunteers and leadership team work so hard to make happen. Positive memories of time spent together should be what brothers and sisters get to carry with them into adulthood.

As 2018 comes to a close, we reflect with gratitude on the support our community has given Kindred Matters this year.

This was a big year for Camp To Belong Oregon and Kindred Matters. Not only did we make the leap to step out as our own organization and change our name, but we also served record numbers of families and children. Thanks to the hard work and support of many, more than 300 individuals participated in Kindred Matters programs in 2018! We are proud of this impact, and enter 2019 with renewed commitment to serve even more families impacted by the child welfare system.

Next year, we have intentions of increasing this impact even further. We plan to grow and strengthen our KINnect Events for siblings living separated. Additionally, our goal is to expand our Family Camp offerings to meet the growing demand for continuing education and community support for foster and adoptive families.

If you’re considering making a year-end gift to a worthy cause, we would love it if you would think of Kindred Matters. With just one paid employee and over 50 dedicated and hardworking volunteers, every dollar goes a long way for a small organization like ours.

We wish you Happy Holidays and a very Happy New Year!