The truth behind this African proverb, “it takes a village to raise a child,” was never clearer than when my family and I first moved to the United States in 2009. With no relatives near us to rely on, it quickly became evident that the only way I could find resources and opportunities to help my child succeed was by developing a strong community of friends, neighbors and educators who could guide me in raising my son in a completely new environment.
Although my situation helped me realize the importance of supporting each other for the benefit of future generations, its challenges paled in comparison to the dire circumstances children without any support often face, either by going through foster care or struggling to receive basic needs.
Studies show how the positive impact of a loving supportive environment can have on children. This reaffirms why I wanted to support an organization like Children’s Home Society of Washington. Their goal is to get to children before they are in urgent need and to focus on prevention. This mind set supports a foundation for a better society.
That is why after graduating from Project Lead, a leadership training program with the United Way of King County that prepares people of color to serve effectively on nonprofit boards, I was honored to be invited as advisor to CHSW marketing efforts.
Nonprofits require a communal effort from staff, board, donors and volunteers. I hope my expertise in marketing and communications will be beneficial to the staff who serve children and their families in Washington. I also want to pay homage to the people that helped me when my son needed it the most. Children need our support so they have a chance at a bright, much deserved future.
Karina San Juan is a marketing and communications director at Pratt Fine Arts Center and a member of Children’s Home Society & Trust Foundation’s Marketing Advisory Committee.
The Marketing Advisory Committee provides expertise, insights and guidance on marketing plans, advertising and fundraising campaigns, outreach and events to further the mission and goals of Children’s Home Society of Washington. If you are interested in joining the committee, please contact Janica Lockhart, Janica.Lockhart@chs-wa.org.