HUG IN A BAG

A Peacemaking Project by allie j.

What is the injustice we are solving?

Our mission is to provide love and support for foster children of Wilmington, Delaware through small but meaningful care packages. We are striving to brighten days and restore smiles.

Our Compassionate Solution:

To solve this injustice of uncontrollable, stressful events that children endure
we will address the need for consistent happiness in foster childrens' lives
by making small deposits into the happiness "bank" of these children through small, but meaningful care packages.

Our Project Plan:

Goals

  • We will distribute 25 care packages to foster homes in Wilmington, DE by May 21, to deposit some joy into their happiness bank.

We will increase my / our compassion by...

We will increase our compassion by listening to what our contact from the foster care center told us what is most valued by the uprooted children. We will add a personal touch from Hugs in a Bag with a handwritten note to each foster child.

How will you show courage?

We can show courage by bringing awareness to this cause because many people forget about foster children and what they have been through.

How will you collaborate with others?

Our team has already reached out to a member from the foster care center and she was able to provide valuable information about the needs of children in her care, since we are unable to speak directly to them. We may also partner with DCAD (Delaware College of Art and Design) for much needed art supplies.

How will you know you are moving in the right direction? (What are specific ways you can measure your impact?)

We will know when we give our contact a satisfaction survey so that we can gain feedback to know where we could improve.

Key Steps

  • 1. Plan project needs and expenses
  • 2. Prepare questions for foster care director
  • 3. Obtain answers and work off of them
  • 4. Order the bags
  • 5. Plan fundraiser
  • 6. Have the fundraiser
  • 7. Collect the money from the fundraiser and use it towards the items that are going to fill the bags
  • 8. Distribute the bags

Reflection:

How did the project deepen your team's understanding of the injustice?

We all realized that foster care children are often forgotten about and we wanted to highlight them and show them that people are thinking about them.

How did your community change as a result of your project?

I think we just brightened the day of the children that received the bags that were given to them. I really hope they enjoyed them.

How many people were impacted by your project?

25

Explain how you came up with the number of people impacted by the project?

We came up with that number because we put together 25 bags for the children.

How did your team learn more about the people affected by the injustice?

Unfortunately we were not able to interact with the children at all because it was against policies, but I would have loved to know what they thought!

What did your team learn?

My team and I learned how to work together and voice everyone's opinions. We also worked on public speaking and taking matters into our own hands with being responsible for everything that took place.

What challenges did your team overcome?

My team and I had to find a foster care center that wanted the bags and then we also had to organize a fundraiser for the bags which took some though.

How have you involved others in designing, carrying out, or expanding this project?

We asked our classmates and teachers for their input of what they would rather the fundraiser be because we had

What advice would you give to someone starting a peacemaking project?

Listen to everyone in the group, they might have an amazing idea.

Our Updates:

LOGO

allie j. 12 February 2018 20:53 This is our logo we created for our project. We think it really signifies the message we are trying to get across each care package. 

Bags

allie j. 8 April 2018 12:22 The care bags have arrived and we could not be more excited!

Comments:

Adrian B.
2 February 2018 11:04

Hi Corinne and Allie!

Thanks so much for posting this project! Supporting foster children and youth is such an important issue. I'm glad you're showing compassion for other youth in your community in this important way.

Have you had the chance yet to talk with foster children/youth and the organizations that serve them to find out if there are specific things they need to help? The hugs in a bag may be the perfect thing--and maybe they also need something else in addition, or in place of it. You never know what they'll say until you ask. :)

It might also be helpful to think about why it is that foster children/youth experience poverty at very high levels--understanding the root cause can help you get at the root of the problem. If you'd like some tools and support in talking with others and understanding the root causes of this injustice, check out this resource: https://www.peacefirst.org/resource/understand-1-talking-others

If it's helpful, you may want to connect with others doing similar work--check out this project here: https://www.peacefirst.org/projects/blessing-bags

And here are some other projects focusing on foster children/youth--connecting with them can help you share ideas and resources:
https://www.peacefirst.org/project/update/fostering-incarceration
https://www.peacefirst.org/projects/foster-children-caring-trashbags-them-when-switching-homes
https://www.peacefirst.org/projects/we-care-about-challenges-facing-preteens-and-teens-foster-care
https://www.peacefirst.org/projects/providing-positive-activities-kids-foster-care

This project is well on its way to a great grant application! Going deeper on understanding the injustices foster children/youth face will only strengthen your project. Thanks for all your work and dedication to this important issue! :)

Best,
Adrian

Corinne F.
12 February 2018 17:54

Hi Adrian,
Thank you for your response and useful resources! We are in the process of creating a prototype for our "Hug in a Bag" and are researching possible organizations in the Wilmington area. Thank you for your support.

Adrian B.
13 February 2018 9:40

Hi Corinne,

Awesome, so glad to hear it! Let us know how we can support your work, and keep us updated. :) Thanks for all you're doing!

Best,
Adrian

PeaceFirst A.
23 February 2018 9:42

Hi Corinne and Allie!

Thanks again so much for posting this project.

As part of the Peace First project-making process, we give formal feedback on your compassionate insight. Once your insight is all set, then you can move forward with your mini-grant application if you need funds to help move your idea into action!

We love how much compassion you are showing with your project and the fact that you are doing something so practical to try to address the injustice.

As Adrian suggested, something that could help your project be even stronger is to spend a little bit more time thinking about what the injustice you are trying to address is. You mentioned that you have identified as the injustice "uncontrollable, stressful events that children endure" - I think it would be great to spend a little bit more time talking to others that could help you understand even at a deeper level what the root cause of the
injustice is.

Thanks again for working to make this world a better place!

Raul

Fish S.
26 March 2018 10:56

Hi Corinne and Allie!

We're excited to hear more about your ideas to address this important injustice! I wanted to let you know about an opportunity -- if you are interested in getting some funding for materials that you need to carry out your project, you can apply for a mini-grant of up to $250.

The deadline to submit your Project Plan and Mini-Grant Application is March 31st if you want to remain eligible to apply to attend a Peace First Accelerator.

As you craft your plan, be sure to consider the feedback we gave you on your compassionate insight, and check out our project planning tools for help turning your insight into a concrete action plan: https://www.peacefirst.org/plan-your-project

Then, through your dashboard you can make any changes you want to make to your "compassionate insight," record your plan in "Make a plan" and then "Apply for a mini-grant" for the materials you need.

Let us know if you have questions or if we can help in any way. We're looking forward to supporting your project!

Fish S.
17 April 2018 15:30

Congratulations! Your project has been selected to receive a Peace First Challenge mini-grant. We will be in touch soon with details about this payment.

The mini-grant process is also a space for you to get feedback on your peacemaking project. We hope you will use this feedback to further strengthen your project. Please see the feedback on your mini-grant below.

Strengths:
Allie, thanks so much for sharing this project. Your care and thoughtfulness is so apparent and appreciated!

One thing I particularly love about your project is the fact that you've worked with folks who work at foster care centers to understand what children might need, and it's also great that you plan to collect feedback to understand how effective your bags were! Does that mean you plan to continue the project, using feedback to think about how to improve it? I hope you do!

It sounds like you have a solid plan for your next steps, too. In particular, it's exciting that you plan to have a fundraiser! Is this something we can help you with?

Things to Consider:
As you dive into this project, I encourage you to keep thinking deeply about what the root causes of these problems are, and how you might solve those. What circumstances cause children to need to enter foster care? What are some problems with the foster care system that create difficulties for young children? What has to change so that 'hugs in a bag' aren't needed -- so that kids' "happiness banks" are already full?

These are big questions, and they take time to answer. The conversations you've been having will help you. I encourage you also to think about reaching out to adults who were part of the foster care system as children, or young people in the foster care system now who are also advocates for improving it. The more conversations you can have with people close to the problem, the better!

As you learn more, I hope you'll update your Compassionate Insight with your thinking. What is causing this harm to occur? What can you do to stop it?

Congratulations and best of luck with your project!

Akila S.
8 June 2018 10:32

Hi Corinne and Allie! We're checking in because you haven't submitted your reflection yet. Reflections were due on May 31 as a part of your mini-grant award. Please submit your reflection as soon as you can. We're looking forward to hearing about how your project went!

Here is the link to the reflection: https://www.peacefirst.org/projects/hug-bag/dashboard/reflection

Akila