It’s the first day of February and we are excited to introduce you to our featured nonprofit of the month! Have you heard about the success Barrington’s own Let It Be Us is having in Illinois? The 2-year-old nonprofit is working tirelessly to find parents for children in the state’s foster care system. For those children who are waiting for families, Let It Be Us is raising funds to develop programs that increase their chances for adoption. They’ve also developed programs that help older children, who will most likely not be adopted, with educational resources.
Founded by Susan McConnell in December of 2014, Let it Be Us envisions a future in which our children in foster care have opportunities and resources by being adopted into a loving family. Approximately 400,000 children are in foster care in the United States. In Illinois, 16,000 children are in foster care. On any given day, approximately 1,000 Illinois foster children are legally free for adoption.
Faced with these sobering statistics, Let it Be Us is taking action by creating solutions. They’ve formed new partnerships with state agencies & legislators and have introduced the following programs that are having a significant impact on the lives of these children.
- Finding Forever Families | Let It Be Us regularly hosts Finding Forever Families events to recruit adoptive parents.
- Educational Mentorship | They’ve developed an Educational Mentorship Program that matches life-skill mentors with older children in foster care who will likely not be adopted.
- Heart Gallery | The Let It Be Us Heart Gallery features online photographs and stories of children available for adoption.
- Project Dignity | Through Project Dignity, Let It Be Us gives children entering foster care duffel bags packed with school supplies and personal care items so they may move within the foster care system with the dignity they deserve.
- Summer Camps | The Let It Be Us Summer Camp Program allows children in Illinois foster care to attend summer camp – either sleep-away camp or day camp – so they may benefit from the educational experience that going to camp provides.
We’ve learned much more about Let It Be Us in recent months while producing this video about their mission and the various ways we can help. The stories of adoptive parents and others on the Let It Be Us leadership board have not only touched us, they’ve inspired us to take action.
So how can we help Let It Be Us help these children? Attend one of the SIX adoptive and foster parent recruitment events Let It Be Us has scheduled for 2017. Visit their online Heart Gallery. Read their latest news & success stories. Volunteer your time to support their programs. Follow Let It Be Us on Facebook. Donate to help fund Let It Be Us initiatives and programming or simply spread the word and spend a little time at LetItBeUs.org.
By the way, if you’re seeking ways to introduce your kids to the rewards of giving back by helping others, Let It Be Us is a great way to do it! All are welcome to join their Kickoff for Kids Super Bowl LI Party at Wool Street Grill & Sports Bar (128 South Wool Street – Barrington) at 4 p.m. on Sunday, February 5th. All ages are welcome.
Admission for kids age 5 and under is free. It’s $15 for kids ages 6-11. Otherwise, tickets cost $30 in advance and $35 at the door and all proceeds will benefit Let It Be Us.