S4G Helps to Transform lives IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA

By Sarah Shamlal, Social4Good

A local charity, She Believes In Me, serves vulnerable children and their families who face a wide variety of daily challenges. Many of these young people lack space to call their own, with over half living in single-family dwellings that house multiple
family groups or non-relatives. The majority do not have the ability or financial opportunity to enroll in afterschool programs or extracurricular activities. Children often care for siblings or younger relatives in the absence of a parent or guardian.

She Believes In Me, (SBIM, www.shebelievesinme.org), was founded in 2018 by a school counselor and a group of teachers and social workers in Herndon, Virginia. These professionals recognized an urgent and growing need to provide support to young girls in the community, many of whom were suffering because of poverty and trauma. SBIM’s goal is to meet the physical and emotional needs of the community’s most vulnerable children and families and has the power to transform our community and the lives of the children who need help.

SBIM provides support to children and families in the following ways:
Liaison Program. The liaison program identifies vulnerable families and helps them make a positive, systemic change. These families are assigned a trusted liaison who will use SBIM resources to provide food, hygiene products, cleaning supplies, and emotional support to children on a biweekly basis.

Monthly Food Distributions. In partnership with Food for Others, SBIM hosts monthly food distributions to families in need.

Food Pantry. In partnership with Floris United Methodist Church, BRAWS, Cornerstones, Food for Others, and other generous donors, SBIM operates a small food pantry at its Herndon location to serve the most vulnerable in the community.

On 13 May, Social4Good (S4G) members sponsored supplies and volunteered for the monthly SBIM “She’s Thoughtful” event in Herndon, VA. Members assisted the 175 students in attendance with lesson supplies, craft materials, games, and snacks. It was a wonderful program and a terrific way to mentor and interact with the girls. In addition to supplies for the event, an Amazon Wish List was established to create 100 Period Packs and stock the Period Pantry with 2500 sanitary pads for the summer. S4G was able to help SBIM exceed their financial goal of $4000 in fundraising!

Renee Gorman, Founder of She Believes In Me, recollects, “In my role as school counselor, I saw a lot of trauma. Girls who didn’t have healthy relationships or see their own inner beauty. She Believes In Me developed programs and a network of volunteers to offer care and support for their emotional well-being. We are grateful to Social4Good for underwriting and volunteering at our May event, and recognizing that period poverty is real by donating period packs and summer pantry supplies.” Renee Gorman, Founder, She Believes In Me.

At the 17 May social event, S4G members and guests enjoyed an evening of Social, Good AND Wine! After assembling 100+
period packs for girls to use to discretely carry period supplies at school, Renee Gorman, SBIM Founder, Teri Taylor, SBIM
Executive Director, and Tara Bloch, BRAWS Executive Director, talked about their organizations, the girls and women they serve, and the power of nonprofit collaborations. The evening was topped off with a wine tasting by Lisa Ames from The Wine Outlet, Vienna, where a portion of wine sales will be donated to BRAWS.

S4G is an all-volunteer, grassroots organization that brings together engaged women who want to meet new people and support the organizations that make our community strong. Each month, this column will highlight S4G’s monthly project to raise awareness on critical needs in our community and local nonprofits making a difference. To learn more about S4G or to support local nonprofits, visit www.Social4Good.community

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