E-news from The Baby Fold

As we reflect upon our blessings, we feel grateful for you!

Thanksgiving Message from Pastor Lori

two children painting pumpkins

1st Thessalonians 5:16-18:


“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, giving thanks in all circumstances; 

for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”  

In the season of thanksgiving, I pray that as we gather together around tables laden with family favorite foods, we will take a moment to give thanks. I suppose most of us will. Giving thanks for food is easy when the aromas have been wafting from the kitchen all morning. But this often quoted scripture for thanksgiving encourages us to give thanks all the time—no matter what is going on.

What?! That’s hard.

Actually, that’s not exactly what the text says. Jesus is asking us to do something more radical. To be thankful in all circumstances, not for our circumstances. To be grateful even when our lives are messy is a sign of faith. To maintain hope in times of struggle signals to others that we have something different in our lives that the world cannot give.

At The Baby Fold, our mission is to offer hope and love to children and families whose lives are sometimes messy. It takes courage to face circumstances and make good decisions. It takes faith to be grateful in the midst of it. As The Baby Fold staff and families work together, we aspire to grow in courage and faith. We are thankful for our donors and friends who provide what we need to extend hope through our services every day.

Rev. Lori Bultemeier

We're thankful for fun events that help children grow!

Students at Hammitt School enjoyed dressing up and trick-or-treating on Halloween! While collecting treats they had the opportunity to practice social skills. Of course, The Baby Fold staff enjoyed the costume parade just as much as the students did.

CEO Clete at the Hammitt Halloween parade
Hammitt staff on Halloween

Families in our Foster Care program had fun at their own Trunk or Treat event! Fun family activities like this help promote bonding, enhance social and emotional development, and reduce stress.

trunk or treat events
trunk or treat events

Healthy Start families in Champaign-Urbana recently took a trip to Curtis Orchard & Pumpkin Patch! Families enjoyed the fall day, strengthening their bonds, and creating lasting family memories...all while munching on yummy apple donuts!

Healthy Start at Curtis Orchard
Healthy Start at Curtis Orchard

Reading is important in early brain development, and our Healthy Start families in McLean County celebrated literacy at a recent gathering. Parents and children came together for a meal and engaged in diverse activities that foster family bonding. The event was themed around the beloved children's book, "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?".

Healthy Start Literacy Party

The Baby Fold's Lead Community Schools Coordinator, Rebecca Kinsey, helped host a wellness fair at Fairview Elementary School. The event not only linked families to nearby resources but also strengthened the connection between families and the school. When parents, teachers, and the community come together, students thrive!

Family at a Wellness Fair table at Fairview
Wellness Fair table at Fairview

We're thankful for our amazing staff!

Jeremy Smith receiving the award

Congratulations Jeremy Smith, Family Support Specialist with The Baby Fold's Healthy Start Champaign-Urbana team! Jeremy recently received the Outstanding Leadership in Home Visiting Award from Prevent Child Abuse Illinois.

Jeremy was nominated for his innovation in creating "Daddy Dialogue", fatherhood groups where men feel at home and able to engage in meaningful dialogue about fatherhood. He found the perfect venue in the community—a local barbershop. This is where Jeremy leads important parenting discussions with area fathers and even brings in social workers, educators, and other professionals to participate as guest speakers. 

Congratulations, Jeremy! Thank you for your amazing work with fathers, babies, and families in Champaign-Urbana.

We're thankful you've adopted so many Christmas Wish Lists!

Child with Santa

Because of your generosity, 560 of our children’s Christmas wish lists have already been adopted! WOW!

We truly appreciate your support of our kids and families. Only 233 children are still waiting to have their lists adopted. 

Thank you for helping provide Christmas morning surprises to hundreds of local children who might not otherwise receive holiday gifts this year! 

We're thankful for your support of the Festival of Trees!

The trees sparkled. The wreaths dazzled. Santa happily listened to Christmas wishes from young children.

Last week, the community truly came out to support The Baby Fold's 2023 Festival of Trees, helping to make our 30th annual fundraiser one of the most successful to date.

Every auction item you bid on, every ticket you purchased, every cookie you enjoyed, and certainly our generous sponsors, volunteers, and designers, all helped raise critical funding for the kids and families in our care.

Thank you for supporting the The Baby Fold's Festival of Trees, and thank you for helping transform lives.

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