Project Lemonade has been selected as our Charity of the Month. This organization, run entirely by volunteers, supports and promotes confidence in foster children by helping them shop for free back-to-school clothes at their location in Lloyd Center Mall. Each foster child selects their own new or nearly new outfits, accessories and shoes. Any child with an open case and those under the supervision of the state of Oregon are eligible to schedule an appointment to shop.
Since 2012, Project Lemonade has served approximately 10,000 foster children from over 26 counties. There are around 13,000 children in the Oregon foster care system. Budget reductions have practically eliminated state-issued clothing vouchers that foster families use to purchase clothing. Many foster children move frequently and sometimes suddenly, and can fit all of their belongings in a single plastic trash bag. Project Lemonade was created to help provide essential clothing items to these children.
This organization was selected as our Charity of the Month by Anna Maria Ponzi, Winery President and Director of Sales and Marketing at Ponzi Vineyards. “Project Lemonade is based on a simple principal: when kids feel good about themselves, their confidence builds, which drives inspiration and motivation,” says Ponzi. “Most foster kids move to several homes throughout the year, usually bringing with them very few belongings. What clothing they may have is often too small or well-worn. At Project Lemonade, we allow kids the thrill of shopping for new back-to-school clothes, which for many is a unique experience. It’s amazing what can happen when a young person begins those first days of school feeling empowered simply by what they’re wearing. I am drawn to help those without a voice. I feel obligated to advocate and support those whose journeys have been difficult, especially young people who are victims of situations beyond their control. Project Lemonade, through its simple mission, allows me a way to make another individual’s path less challenging and, if nothing else for a moment, just a little more positive.”
We invite you to visit Ponzi Vineyards this month and join us in support of this valuable organization. A portion of every tasting fee will be donated to Project Lemonade through the end of July.