My New Red Shoes 2008 Annual Report

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Transcript of My New Red Shoes 2008 Annual Report

My New Red Shoes

Annual Report 2008

The mission of My New Red Shoes is to empower homeless and low-income youth to succeed in school by providing them with brand new clothing so that they may greet the school year with pride and by educating and rallying the youth community around the needs of homeless children. My New Red Shoes is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization EIN #20-4683289

Cover photo and photos opposite Leonard Brzezinski, 2008

Leonard Brzezinski, 2008

From the Director and ChairDear Friends, It has been yet another year of major growth and transformation for My New Red Shoes. We headed out of the garage into our first-ever office space, hosted a Pack for Pride Day for over 100 volunteers to sort and pack over 1,500 back-to-school gift bags, and more than doubled our summer distribution to 1,525 homeless children, up from 650 last year. Its hard to imagine, but for homeless children who may wonder where they will sleep each night, a new school outfit can make the difference between being able to focus in class and wanting to hide from their schoolwork, teachers and classmates. In the words of one agency professional, Your thoughtful generosity targets a very real issue of our clients who have few family resources and many challenges including abuse, neglect, trauma, mental health and learning disabilities. This year they started school in new clothes of their own choosing and felt special, considered and cared for thank you. While engaged in the process of strategic planning this year, My New Red Shoes staff and board were delighted (while not surprised) to realize that our young organization is already achieving remarkable results. After careful analysis, we set a goal to provide brand new school wardrobes to 2,500 homeless and very low-income Bay Area children in the summer of 2009. My New Red Shoes Kids Helping Kids education programs will soar to new heights this school year. The successful Teen Advocacy Council (formerly the Junior Board) will launch its second site in San Francisco. Two Peninsula middle schools will engage in long-term education programs that address the causes of homelessness and empower students to become advocates on behalf of their homeless peers. Among other advocacy projects, participants will help organize My New Red Shoes annual walkathon this spring in downtown Burlingame. While the challenges facing homeless children are so great and their needs so dire, the communitys awareness and knowledge of this problem lag far behind. Kids Helping Kids is My New Red Shoes answer. For the majority of this past fiscal year we have worked side-by-side as Co-Executive Directors. In October, Heather assumed the position as Board Chair with Caron taking on the position of Executive Director. Along with six new board members, a strong professional team and your steadfast support, we will continue to guide My New Red Shoes to the benefit of homeless Bay Area children.

Caron Tabb Executive Director

Heather Hopkins Founder & Board Chair My New Red Shoes Annual Report 1

Clothing for ConfidenceMy New Red Shoes Clothing for Confidence program provides homeless and low-income children with brand new shoes and $50 gift cards to clothing retailers so that they may experience the magic of back-to-school shopping and greet the school year proud and ready to learn. My New Red Shoes partners with homeless shelters and other community service agencies to identify children in need of clothing and distribute donations. By leaving their students back-toschool clothing needs to My New Red Shoes, agencies can focus on providing the professional services that stabilize the clients in their care.

2008 CLIENT STATISTICSVery Low Income HomelessSan Francisco County San Mateo County Santa Clara County Ages 5-11 Ages 12-18 Girls Boys 0 50018% 82% 28% 30% 42% 37% 63% 50% 50%

1000

1500

FILLING AN UNMET COMMUNITY NEED On any given day, approximately 5,000 school-aged children experience homelessness in the San Francisco Bay Area alone. This situation has a devastating effect on a childs education; youth who have experienced homelessness are twice as likely to repeat a grade as other children and are at much higher risk of not attending school, ultimately increasing their chances of repeating the cycle of homelessness in the future. National and local homelessness organizations have repeatedly identified a lack of school clothing as one of the barriers to education for homeless youth both because it is a basic need and because children feel reluctant to attend school without suitable clothing. By filling this gap, My New Red Shoes not only helps increase the school attendance of homeless youth, it gives children a much-needed confidence boost.

My New Red Shoes Annual Report 2

At a GlancePROGRAM RESULTS AND IMPACT During the 2008 back-to-school season, My New Red Shoes: Provided $50 clothing gift cards to 1,525 homeless and low-income children, helping them feel more confident and prepared for school. Supported 20 community agencies (with 39 sites) serving homeless and low-income families. Funneled over $87,250 of clothing and shoes into the Bay Area community. Served 92% of the homeless school-aged population in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties combined. Rallied 51 community organizations and over 250 volunteers to support its mission including corporations, social service clubs, religious organizations and school groups.

2008 PARTNER AGENCIESSAN FRANCISCO Asian Womens Shelter Compass Community Services Glide Memorial Church Hamilton Family Center La Casa de las Madres Raphael House St. Josephs Family Center Tenderloin Housing Clinic SAN MATEO COUNTY Communities Overcoming Relationship Abuse HIP Housing InnVision the Way Home Interfaith Hospitality Network Samaritan House Shelter Network Youth and Family Enrichment Services SANTA CLARA COUNTY Bill Wilson Center Ecumenical Hunger Program EHC LifeBuilders Family Supportive Housing Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County Unity Care Group InnVision the Way Home

2008 CLIENT STATISTICS (CONTINUED)

My New Red Shoes Annual Report 3

Clothing for ConfidenceTwelve-year-old Alex* is one of six children. With his familys resources focused on purchasing formula and diapers for his little siblings, Alex has not received a new pair of shoes for three years and his clothing is handed down several times before he receives it. This year Alex is hoping to play basketball for his Junior High team. Thanks to My New Red Shoes, Alex received a brand new pair of athletic shoes in August that will allow him to join the other boys as they dribble down the court and score. After basketball practice, Alex will also have brand new school clothing to wear in seventh grade thanks to the $50 clothing gift card he received from My New Red Shoes.

I usually get my big brothers or cousins used tennis shoes. With my brand new shoes, I now can join the basketball team this year at school. I am so excited!Five-year-old Joyce has been living in a transitional homeless shelter with her mother for the past year. After experiencing domestic violence and encountering developmental delays, Joyce was having a hard time preparing for her first day of kindergarten this fall. In August, My New Red Shoes put a spring in Joyces step when it hosted a back-to-school party at her shelter. According to Joyces case manager, Joyces face lit up when she opened her gift bag and found a brand new pair of shoes decorated with little, pink cherries. Joyces shoes fit perfectly and gave her a much-needed confidence boost when she wore them to kindergarten this fall.

My New Red Shoes Annual Report 4

Leonard Brzezinski, 2008

Leonard Brzezinski, 2008

Success StoriesClara and her four siblings are currently homeless due to domestic violence despite their single mothers job helping other families in need. According to Claras mother, Clara and her siblings have seen too much theyve been forced by their experiences to think and act like adults. When Clara received her back-to-school gift from My New Red Shoes, she felt for the first time in years the pure and simple childhood joy of looking forward to the first day of school.

The parents shed tears when they see the brand new shoes. It is important for their children to not feel like outcasts but like everyone else at school.

Antoine is an 11-year-old boy who lives in a one-bedroom apartment with his single, working father. This year, Antoine and his dad were saving to buy a new pair of shoes for Antoines entrance into middle school, but this indulgence would mean that they would have to cut back on their purchase of basic necessities for the month. My New Red Shoes $50 clothing gift card and new pair of shoes meant not only that Antoine would start off sixth grade feeling proud and ready to learn, but also that he and his father could save their precious family resources for food and other basic needs.

Leonard Brzezinski, 2008

*Please note that the stories and quotes collected here do not correspond with the photos. My New Red Shoes Annual Report 5

Leonard Brzezinski, 2008

Kids Helping KidsMy New Red Shoes Kids Helping Kids program plants the seeds of compassion and charity in students by engaging them in educational programming and service projects that teach them about the effects of homelessness on children. The goals of the Kids Helping Kids program are to empower students to become leaders, advocates and activists in support of their homeless peers and to build bridges of understanding between children of all socioeconomic backgrounds. In 2008, Kids Helping Kids programs included: The Junior Board (Teen Advocacy Council in FY2009): A unique, four-month after school leadership program for high school students. Shiny Shoe Part