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Monday, November 29, 2010

The Red Scarf Project

My Christmas knitting has gotten a little sidetracked with the discovery of Orphan Foundation of America's Red Scarf Project. According to their website:
OFA helps former foster children become successful adults. In most states, foster youth leave the social services system when they turn 18. In the eyes of the court they’re adults, but few 18 year olds are emotionally, mentally or financially able to support themselves. Without someone to guide them, too many end up homeless, unemployed, incarcerated or pregnant. But it doesn't have to be that way. Thanks to the generosity of thousands of volunteers and donors, OFA is changing the odds for former foster youth every day.
One of their projects is the Red Scarf Project for which crafters make red scarves to give to these young people for Valentine's Day to encourage them.

This project strikes a chord with me because I am an orphan. I wasn't part of the foster care system, but I was raised by my aunt and uncle after the deaths of my parents. I understand what it is like to be 18 and on your own, trying to find your way in the world. Not that my aunt and uncle weren't there if I needed them, but I never felt comfortable enough to ask for their help. From the day I left for college (when I was still 17) I felt that I was on my own.

The Red Scarf Project is a small way that I can encourage someone that they can make it. I've done it, and I'm passing on a scarf to let them know that I've been there and I know they can do it too.  If you'd like to join in just follow the link.

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