foster family
stock photo of a foster family in DC

The following was written by Latin American Youth Center’s Amaris Montes.

If your child’s school has at least 100 kids in attendance, have you ever looked around and thought–“At least one of these kids is in foster care?” If you haven’t, you should start to. One in every 100 kids living in DC is in foster care; That is 1% of all children and youth in DC. They often go unnoticed and face unique challenges that are largely not addressed.

Take seven year old Felicia: She came into the foster care system after sexual assault by a family friend caused her to be separated from her biological mother. While her mother tries to improve her living conditions as best she can, is taking parenting classes, and works long hours at a restaurant so that Felicia can return to her care, Felicia lives with a foster parent. She lives with a loving single parent, Ms. Alanzo, who provides all the care and resources a normal parent would. Felicia understandably feels a mix of emotions–too many to process at just seven years old–and works them out by having excessive tantrums, ignoring her work at school, and needing a massive amount of attention. Her school is less than understanding of this behavior, threatening to kick her out of school if she doesn’t change her behavior. If this were to happen, Felicia would fall even more behind, lose the little continuity she has in her life, and her ability to trust and attach to adults and peers would be further jeopardized.

There are about 1,000 children in DC living in a foster home. May is National Foster Care Month, so during this month, we hope all DC residents take a moment to recognize that not all the children you see around your neighborhood have safe, stable homes. If you have ever thought about becoming a foster parent, please contact the Latin American Youth Center’s Foster Care Program today at [email protected]

VCH logo 2016

From a press release:

“Hill Center is proud to announce the fourth annual Volunteer Capitol Hill, a volunteer fair featuring over 35 non-profit organizations, on April 30 from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Volunteer Capitol Hill takes place at Hill Center at the Old Naval Hospital, 921 Pennsylvania Ave, SE.

Volunteer Capitol Hill showcases the diverse range of community building activities being undertaken by nonprofit groups all over Capitol Hill. Whether individuals are looking to make a difference in the community, develop new job skills, make new friends, or spend time together as a family, there is an opportunity for everyone.

With organizations spanning from youth development to dog rescue to food pantries and everything in between, volunteers will find something that fits their interests, availability, and skill sets. There are even opportunities that people can do comfortable from their homes, one time, or ongoing commitments.

Participating organizations include: (more…)


From Dupont Underground:

“Please help us build Raise/Raze, Hou de Sousa’s winning design in the Re-Ball! competition and the first ever art installation in the Dupont Underground. We really, really, really, need your help (did I mention really?). We need to build about 18 thousand cubes -composed of 27 balls each- before we open on April 30, with most of the production happening on weekends. So…don’t even bother doing the math…we have a lot to do! We’ve had an awesome lead up to this moment, with great press and all of Washington – not to mention the design world – watching to see if we can do this thing…so, LET’S DO THIS THING! (more…)

Thanks to a reader for sharing:

“I wanted to share with you a video my friend made for Luke’s Wings, an organization that reunites members of the military with their families when they need them most. This video is the story of Medal of Honor recipient Captain Florent Groberg.”

On August 8th, 20012, Captian Florent Groberg was leading a security detail on his second tour in Afghanistan, when they were attacked by 2 suicide bombers. Capt. Grobergs actions that day saved lives, and earned him the Medal of Honor.

Luke’s Wings, an orginization that works directly with wounded warriors, and their families, asked us to tell his story for their yearly gala, Hope Takes Flight.

courtesy Rock Creek Conservancy

From an email:

“Come Volunteer in Rock Creek Park for #MLKDay

Join Rock Creek Conservancy on Saturday, January 16th and Monday, January 18th in honor of the 2016 MLK Day of Service. Over 15 volunteer activities are happening throughout Washington, DC, and Montgomery County, MD. Volunteer activities include (1) cutting invasive English ivy from trees as part of the Conservancy’s effort to protect the Rock Creek tree canopy; (2) cutting invasive vines such as berry and Oriental bittersweet so natives can grow in the park; (3) cleaning up trash that has accumulated along streams; and (4) laying mulch to improve trail access. 

Visit our website for more information and the most up to date event details. If you are interested in getting a group involved, please email [email protected] (more…)

From an email:

“Over the past 6 years, we have been bringing snowball related fun to thousands of DC residents (and stranded visitors) in the form of the DC Snowball Fight Association. While it is always fun to throw a fluffy snowball at an unassuming stranger, there are those for which the snow can be a dangerous burden and hazard – which is why we have joined forces with the DC mayor’s office this year on a new initiative.

Join us at Ping Pong Dim Sum in Chinatown this Friday evening (December 18) to learn how YOU can help seniors and people with disabilities to shovel out their snow this winter, as you head to or from the next snowball fight! 

What: DC Snowballs For a Cause Holiday Happy Hour!
When: Friday, December 18, 2015. 5:307:30 pm 

Where: Ping Pong Chinatown, 900 7th St NW, Washington, District of Columbia 20001  (more…)

Photo by PoPville flickr user Phil

“Dear PoPville,

I’m going to be in DC over Christmas this year, as I have done for several years. I do dinner with an uncle in Maryland on Christmas Eve and spend Christmas Day alone in the quiet. This year my job changed and I haven’t had time to volunteer weekly as I had done since moving to DC, so I’d like to spend the day volunteering. Any suggestions of where volunteers are needed on Christmas Day?”


Thanks to a reader for passing on this great project to knit blankets for all the homeless babies at DC general:

“Sunday at 4:30pm
Off Road Indoor Cycling
905 U St NW

Join us kick off the project to provide handmade baby blankets to the 200+ babies living in DC General, the capital’s primary family shelter. You don’t need to know how to knit/crochet; we’ll show you and provide the yarn!”


From an email:

826DC is a nonprofit tutoring and writing center for students ages 6-18, and is part of a national organization co-founded by the best-selling author, Dave Eggers. This Saturday, we will be unveiling our brand new home inside the historic Tivoli building. Previously housed behind the Museum of Unnatural History, the new location will be fronted by an equally unique shop: Tivoli’s Astounding Magic Supply Co. This will be the first chance to shop the new store, while also learning about our upcoming Fall/Winter programs for students. All proceeds from the store benefit 826DC’s 100% free writing programs for DC youth.” (more…)

holiday card drive
cards from last year’s drive

From an email:

“Its that time of year again! We are collecting handmade holiday cards for the residents of the Old Soldiers Home/ Armed Forces Retirement home here in DC. If you know an adult, office, child, daycare, or school that would be interested in making holiday cards to bring some joy to these individuals who have spent years or a lifetime in service to all of us, please spread the word and help us hand out a card to every retired soldier we can this holiday season. Last year we handed out over 600 hugely appreciated holiday cards from all over the country. The cards are delivered along with some hugs, singing and lots of holiday cheer.

I will be happy to pick up the cards you make or you may mail/ drop them at my home. The deadline for this small but meaningful way to help experience the joy of giving back in our own backyard is Friday, December 11th. In the event the number of cards exceeds the number of residents, all of the remaining art will be shipped to operation gratitude for placement in care packages of persons serving overseas. Please help spread the word and lets make this years card drive a success!

Thanks so much/ Happy Holidays.
Sarah Gabriel