Tommy Bahama event raises $190,000 to help provide families for kids

Tommy Bahama event raises $190,000 to help provide families for kids
Soleil, who is a part of Olive Crest’s programs, next to her original artwork, which went up for auction.

For the 20th consecutive year, Tommy Bahama Restaurant and Store put on its annual Pacific Coast Classic Dinner and Golf Tournament to benefit Olive Crest.

The dinner, hosted at Tommy Bahama’s fabulously remodeled coastal location in Newport Beach, featured a live auction and an immersive experience giving guests an opportunity to walk in the shoes of a teen aging out of the system.

The golf tournament, held at Monarch Beach Golf Links, welcomed 148 golfers. The two events raised over $190,000 for Olive Crest.

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Hundreds “Pick a Purse” and Help Stop Child Abuse

Hundreds “Pick a Purse” and Help Stop Child Abuse

Last month, more than 450 women and men from the grocery industry came together to support Olive Crest children and families. They enjoyed an afternoon filled with hundreds of purses, raffle prizes, and accessories up for grabs for a great cause: Olive Crest Food Industry’s 2nd Annual Pick-a-Purse event!

Beyond the fun and excitement of picking out a purse to take home, there was a strong reminder of the why behind this event. The testimonial from a young woman named Evi brought people to tears as she shared how Olive Crest stepped in and helped her find a forever family amongst her challenging upbringing with an abusive father and (often) absentee mother.

Dina Serrano (Ralphs), Rita Cabot (Norco Ranch), and Mickie Sharp-Villanueva (The Performance Group) made this incredible event come to life for all who attended. Thank you to all of the sponsors, vendors, and supporters who attended as we continue toward the goal of a strong family for every child. Child Abuse Stops Here®.

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A Night of Bowling and a Priceless Time for Foster Families to Connect

A Night of Bowling and a Priceless Time for Foster Families to Connect 9

Developing meaningful relationships can be one of the most challenging aspects of being in the child welfare system. It’s a whole new world for parents and kids alike, a time when both need a lot of family and community support. Thanks to Ingram Micro, Olive Crest in Orange County was able to do just that on Tuesday, August 6. Ingram Micro graciously hosted a bowling night for 20 Olive Crest foster families and a host of Olive Crest staff at Irvine Lanes.

A wonderful evening for all, Olive Crest and 20 Ingram Micro volunteers took over nine lanes that evening. Each family was welcomed by an Ingram Micro volunteer who gave them a customized water bottle, pencils, pencil sharpeners, and candy. They also provided bowling shoes, two hours of bowling, and volunteers to help little ones bowl, along with a splendid dinner of pizza, salad, fruit and drinks. It was an awesome way for Olive Crest families to connect with each other and develop critical relationships within the foster community.  Olive Crest Adoptions Supervisor, Jennifer Oei, said, “We truly felt spoiled and we are incredibly grateful for Ingram Micro’s generosity.”

Earlier this year, Ingram Micro donated proceeds from their annual golf tournament toward Olive Crest children and families, as well. As a way to say thank you, kids at Olive Crest created a “fingerprint tree” during a support group to give to Ingram Micro.

Thank you to Ingram Micro and all who support children and families at Olive Crest.

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Students at Olive Crest Academy Enjoy a Newer Spruced-Up Learning Environment

Students at Olive Crest Academy Enjoy a Newer Spruced-Up Learning Environment

Transform a school and you are likely to transform the lives of many students! Through the hard work of 130 wonderful Orange County RSM volunteers, Olive Crest Academy now has a fresh start for the 2019-2020 school year!

On August 2, 2019, RSM LLP commemorated their second year volunteering with Olive Crest (and their 10th year volunteering as organization, “A Decade of Doing”). Last year, more than 70 RSM staff worked to refurbish one of Olive Crest’s group homes. This year, they repainted, cleaned, and spruced-up classrooms, purchased and installed new furniture and desks, disposed of old furniture, beautified landscaping, and so much more! Additionally, RSM will make a financial donation to Olive Crest for every hour volunteered (608 total hours this year).

For students who may have difficulty focusing, learning, and believing they can, an uplifting atmosphere makes a world of difference. Thanks so much for all of your support over the years, RSM! Your hard work won’t go unnoticed by the students and staff at Olive Crest Academy.

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Kids and Teens are Ready for School, Thanks to Your Support!

Kids and Teens are Ready for School, Thanks to Your Support!

Each year, donations of backpacks and school supplies help get kids on track for a successful school year.

Michael Sullivan and Associates LLP not only cares about the law, they also care about supporting at-risk kids in their community. Thanks to them (and many more), our back-to-school drive in the Inland and Desert Communities was a success!

They donated more than 30 backpacks filled with school supplies of every kind. This gave families the opportunity to spend more time focusing on learning, growing, and achieving for the new school year and less time on finding money for school supplies. This can often be a burden for a family on a limited budget, or for foster and kinship parents.

We can’t thank Michael Sullivan and Associates enough for their support over the years (through our back-to-school drives, Easter drives, and local fundraising events). Thank you to them and to all supporters who made sure Olive Crest students went back to school this year feeling confident and equipped for success.

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Young Adults Formerly in Foster Care Gifted a Safe Space

Young Adults Formerly in Foster Care Gifted a Safe Space

Navigating life after foster care isn’t easy. When teens age out of the child welfare system, they often need more support than ever as they navigate learning how to live on their own, the stress of everyday adult life, and finding a safe place to call home.

Thanks to your generosity, many Olive Crest teens (as well as any former foster youth) have the opportunity to apply for transitional housing. Through this program, they have a small apartment and receive weekly training in basic life skills (cleaning, cooking, grocery shopping, laundry, and even conflict resolution). They also receive assistance in using local transportation, education and employment coaching, college prep (financial aid application) assistance, and an opportunity to create savings that Olive Crest matches up to $250 a month.

And with the help and community support from Optum Healthcare, a few Orange County young adults received an extra special treat this summer: beautiful, landscaped backyards. On August 8, 30 Optum healthcare staff members volunteered for hours with gardening tools to make over four different spaces for THP residents. Now, not only do they have a place to call home, but a safe place to stop and smell the roses, too…something many of them have never had before.

Thanks to all who continue to support children and families through Olive Crest. Thanks for being a part of the solution!

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100 Teens Wrapped in Support This Summer

100 Teens Wrapped in Support This Summer

Staff from Olive Crest in the Inland and Desert Communities gather together to help support the teens they work with.

Isolation, past abuse, and poor coping skills can be stressors that leave teens hanging in the balance and vulnerable to abuse during the summer months. And sometimes just a day away from the stress of everyday life to connect with other teens and mentors can make a world of difference.

Thanks to caring community partners like The Grove Community Church, this past August, 100 Inland and Desert community teens from Olive Crest were able to do just that! The church provided a wonderful event filled with water games, flag football, arts and crafts, and some delicious food.

But it wasn’t all fun and games! We are grateful for the opportunity to expose teens (who may have difficult family backgrounds and who need to heal) to ways to build positive relationships, learn more about themselves, and learn how to “self-regulate” their emotions during these times.

Thanks to supporters like you, we are able to continue to wrap these teens in encouragement and support this summer and all year long.

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Gimbel Foundation Helped Brianna Go to College!

Gimbel Foundation Helped Brianna Go to College! 1

Brianna, one of our Olive Crest teens, is now stretching her wings all the way to San Francisco State University! Having graduated from her local community college, where she received scholarship support through the Gimbel Foundation, Brianna is a shining example of what can be accomplished through Olive Crest’s program for transitional-aged youth.

Rose Welch, Lead Independent Living Skills Coach, says, “Brianna has a wonderful spirit and has taken the tools learned, and sowed these in herself and other clients. I am excited for her.” After her first-ever plane flight to attend the new student orientation and a whirlwind tour of San Francisco, Brianna is more than ready to continue to stretch her wings and see what the future holds.

We are so proud of you, Brianna! And we are so grateful for generous friends like you who make all the difference for youngsters like Brianna through your faithful, generous support of Olive Crest.

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110 Families Get Ready to Help Foster and Adoptive Children

110 Families Get Ready to Help Foster and Adoptive Children

From the Olive Crest team at Wait No More: Thank you to everyone who came to the event to support children and families!

So many children still need forever homes—and this past May, at a very special event, 110 families took the first steps toward fostering or adopting a child, or to support families getting involved.

Focus on the Family hosts the Wait No More event, which was held on May 18 this year at Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, California. Focus on the Family partners with organizations and churches to put together one-day events to make it easier for foster and adoptive children to find permanent homes. Families at this year’s event could choose from 19 foster care services to work with—and we are so grateful for 43 families that registered with Olive Crest to make a difference for children and families.

Thank you to these families and all supporters helping transform the lives of kids and teens every day.

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A Magical Evening of Hope for Olive Crest Kids and Families

A Magical Evening of Hope for Olive Crest Kids and Families

On May 2, Jones Day in Los Angeles hosted A Magical Evening of Hope benefitting the children and families of our Olive Crest community, which raised more than $68,000. It was truly a magical night of mingling and enjoying unreal views of downtown from Jones Day’s suite as well as entertainment provided by Los Angeles’ most skilled illusionists. Guests also learned more about how to get involved in stopping child abuse and how its prevention can dramatically impact issues in our communities like human trafficking, homelessness, and drug abuse.

Our thanks to all our volunteers and Jones Day for making this magical event possible!

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