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May 13, 2020

Our Response to COVID-19

Dear Friends of Friends:

Updated August 25, 2020

At Friends of the Children–SF Bay Area, we serve children who face multiple systemic obstacles, providing each with a professional, salaried — not volunteer — mentor to walk beside them from kindergarten through high school graduation. Our long-term commitment to each child means more than ever during this unprecedented pandemic — 12+ years, no matter what!

Our children are sheltering in overcrowded apartments in and around Bayview Hunters Point, where the COVID-19 infection rate is twice the city average. They have lost the academic, social and nutritional support their schools normally provide. Many lack the technology they need to stay in touch with their Professional Mentors or access the same online academic resources as their more affluent peers. And the economic shutdown is hitting their families hardest, creating food and housing insecurity and exacerbating challenges like domestic violence and substance abuse.

Friends of the Children–SF Bay Area has pivoted to meet the demands of this unprecedented moment. As you can see from this screenshot of Friend Jessica and her youth Gabrielle, our program staff is finding innovative ways to provide the intentional, loving support our children deserve, even while sheltering at home.

And we’re expanding the scope of our services to address our families’ most urgent needs. For example, we’re partnering with generous donors to provide Safeway gift cards and home-delivered meals from DoorDash, laptops and WiFi to those who lack them and $500 cash payments to caregivers.

Thank you to all our generous supporters who make it possible for us to continue serving the children who need it most when they need it most. And please be safe!

Gratefully,

Michael Rugen
Co-Founder & Executive Director
Friends of the Children–SF Bay Area

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