Wayne CarsonI love this time of year—don’t you? Parties, presents, decorations, great food, and for me, great memories of past holidays with loved ones. 

However, my 30 years of working with children who have experienced the hurt and pain of abuse has taught me that the holidays you and I love aren’t fun for so many kids who don’t feel safe around adults. It’s just not fair that our kids have experienced such difficult things so early in life. 

But I’ve been excited about coming to work all these years because I’ve learned what amazing things can happen when our children and families get the right help at the right time. Children do not need people to feel sorry for them. They need people who are willing to sit next to them and acknowledge the trauma. People who are strong enough to hear their pain. People who will hang in there with them to show them that they are now safe, that they are loveable, and that there is great hope for their future.

At ACH, this past Christmas gave us some special ways to do this.

We’re continuing to show our children and our families that we are here with them and that life can be fun. We celebrate, we play and we create good memories of the holidays. And we can do this because you—and so many people in the community—support us.

Thanks to an incredible number of generous “elves” who sponsored toy drives, brought treats, and volunteered their time, our campus has been full of Christmas cheer again this year.

And while our kiddos are thankful for the toys and cookies, what touched their hearts is that you took time to show you care. The spirit of safety, hope and love you’ve helped provide will last long past the holidays. I know because I’ve seen it—it’s a very special part of what we do every day to help these amazing children become the remarkable people that they can become.

Thank you for making this holiday season special for more than 650 children who deserve it! We couldn’t do it without you. It takes all of us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year to make their spirits bright.

From our ACH family to yours, may 2018 bring you good health, peace, joy and hope for a future fulfilled.