Rancho Damacitas Needs Help Sending 36 Kids Back to School

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Southern California nonprofit organization launches online fundraiser to cover extracurricular costs.

As parents begin their back-to-school shopping, family budgets take a big hit with backpacks, binders and general supplies. Throw in extracurricular activities and suddenly you’re spending a small fortune. Rancho Damacitas is facing the same financial worry for thirty-six kids that won’t have the opportunity to participate in extracurricular activities without financial help.

Rancho Damacitas is a community group home, providing residential and therapeutic services to children ages six to eighteen. These children have been removed from their homes mostly due to severe abuse or neglect. Director of Development Clifford Nunn states, "Twenty-five of our thirty-six kids will be involved with extracurricular activities through school as of now; that number will likely increase once school starts and the kids see what options they have." He continues, "Where we are going to need help is with the classroom fees, activity fees, special electronics and all of the details that go beyond basic supplies."

Rancho Damacitas believes in community integration for their children. The nonprofit organization is currently hosting an online fundraiser to support these extra endeavors, with the goal of raising $45 for each child. Donations will go directly to a specific child and help them achieve their goals for the academic school year. The Rancho Damacitas website provides a Fundraising page that allows donors to directly donate to extracurricular activities. You can access this page by visiting 4kidsfirst.org.

"We want to show the children at Rancho Damacitas that involvement in their school and community will help them become well-rounded individuals which will carry over with them into adulthood," explains Nunn. "For these kids to be involved with their classmates and friends would help provide discipline and structure to their lives."

While Rancho Damacitas does receive some governmental funding and grant support, the organization relies heavily on private donations and fundraisers. For more information about the Back-to-School extracurricular campaign or additional information regarding the organization, visit http://www.4kidsfirst.org

About Rancho Damacitas

Rancho Damacitas is a division of Thessolanika Family Services, which is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing long-term care and treatment for children, most of whom have experienced abuse and neglect. Children accepted to TFS live at Rancho Damacitas, a community group home located in Temecula Valley Southern California wine country. If children cannot be reunited with their family or are adopted, Project Independence is a program designed by TFS to help children successfully transition to adulthood through counseling and emotional support services. TFS accepts children from Riverside, San Bernardino, Los Angeles, Orange and San Diego counties. In 2013, the organization will celebrate its 30th Anniversary. More information about the organization and its programs can be found at http://www.4kidsfirst.org or by calling (951) 302-2317.

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Kristi Reedy

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