At St. Stephen’s Youth Programs, we have so much for which to be thankful: the joy we get from our young people; the deep connections with their families; the passion and energy of our staff and volunteers; and the hard work of our partner organizations--religious and community groups--which helps to make every dollar and every hour do more for our young people.
On Sunday November 20, we celebrated all of those things--plus our brand new kitchen!--at a Gratitude Brunch with our friends and supporters from Parish of the Epiphany in Winchester. Our collaboration with Parish of the Epiphany has been a long and fruitful one, including so many wonderful B-SAFE meals, our annual Turkey Wahoo event (taking place on Tuesday November 22 this year), and a warm welcome at field trips when our youth visited Epiphany over the years.
Our friends from Parish of the Epiphany provided the seed money for the kitchen project so it was especially fitting and important that they were here as we dedicated the kitchen to long-time SSYP participant and staff member Jorge Fuentes, a lover of good food and a student of the culinary arts, who grew up to be an exemplary leader in our program before he was tragically killed by gun violence four years ago.
We prepared a celebratory brunch in the new kitchen and then sat down to eat together. Along with Jorge’s family, the people of St. Stephen’s and the people of Parish of the Epiphany shared a meal. Even more importantly, we shared a sense of partnership, of purpose to create more justice, and of thankfulness.
Wishing all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving!
By Jen Cusack, Director of Leadership Giving