JFS Connecting Hearts’ third annual kick-off event for Adoption Awareness Month returned this year “brew and improved” with a new name and the same mission: CONNECT!
Garden Grove Brewing Co. and Urban Winery joined WTVR CBS 6 as a Presenting Sponsor and brought an exciting new dimension to the event. During the first half of the evening, Garden Grove owner Ryan Mitchell guided attendees through a fun virtual tasting of four beverages delivered ahead of time to each guest. The offerings included two craft beers, honey wine, and a cider made from heirloom apples!
CBS 6 anchor Bill Fitzgerald was back again as the event’s emcee, and in the second half of the evening he highlighted JFS Connecting Hearts’ mission: to find loving adoptive, foster, and kinship families for every child in Central Virginia’s foster care system.
To help tell the story, we showed video interviews with three teenagers who experienced foster care. Each of them shared their answers to a simple question: what can adults do to help kids like them? Fitzgerald echoed one of the most powerful answers: “to catch me when I fall.” Connecting Hearts’ founder, Debbie Johnston, concluded the evening with a few words about the life-changing effect just one loving adult can have on the life of a child or teen.
Many thanks to everyone who attended CONNECT – the event had twice as many guests as last year! We are so grateful to all of our sponsors, including Debbie Johnston, JFS President Eric Shoenfeld, Sandy Sisisky, Hirschler, Truist, Carroll Plumbing & Heating, Inc., Susan Brewer, and Nancy and Tom McCandlish.
Finally, it is an honor to celebrate our fifth anniversary co-hosting the multimedia Adoption Awareness Month campaign, “A Hand to Hold,” with WTVR CBS 6! Three times a day, every day in November, CBS 6 features the stories of children in foster care awaiting adoption – leading to many calls from all over Central Virginia from individuals and couples who want to help.