Every year around the holidays, the Village chooses a worthwhile cause to sponsor at our annual benefit. This year, our hearts and help are going to Project STAR at the Children’s Institute. Project STAR was created as a way to help potential adopting families recognize their own abilities, strengths and see all the support available to them when considering the adoption of children with special needs. Placing these children had been challenging, and Project STAR has helped give these children a better opportunity to be a part of a permanent family. The STAR in Project STAR stands for Specialized Training for Adoption Readiness and has been very successful at opening the hearts and minds of potential forever families. This project has been a combined effort through The Children’s Institute, Three Rivers Adoption Council, and Allegheny County Office of Children, Youth, and Families.
Project STAR’s services have expanded to include all children and families in Western Pennsylvania, although children with special needs are still a major focus. The organization opened an office in Beaver County, Pennsylvania, with their primary goal of creating a permanent home for children remaining constant. Because of this, Project STAR has won numerous awards. Project STAR is licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare as an adoption, foster care and private children and youth social service agency. They are also an affiliate member of the Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network (SWAN) and maintain contracts with local, statewide and out-of-state counties in the areas of placement services and family preservation/reunification services.
For everything that Project STAR has done and continues to do, we invite you to come out and support this amazing cause at our annual Holiday Benefit at Casey’s Family Restaurant, Christmas Circus, on Saturday, December 16th from 3 to 11pm. We will have basket raffles and family entertainment. We ask that you bring an unwrapped gift that will be given to a child in foster care. Gifts for children of all ages are needed, with an increased need for kids ages 13 – 21. If you cannot attend the benefit, we will also be accepting drop off donations at both Village locations, Casey’s Family Restaurant, and Salon 13 starting November 20th – December 15th. We appreciate your generosity, kindness, and support!