Love Our Kids Family Day Entertains, Educates Community
SAN ANTONIO — Youth, families and community agencies convened on a brisk Saturday morning at the historic Woodlawn Gym for the fun-filled, carnival-like Love Our Kids Family Day on April 7. Sponsored by BCFS Health and Human Services-San Antonio’s Preparation for Adult Living (PAL) program, amid spirited balloon-stomping games, beanbag tic tac toe and some competitive 4-on-4 half court pickup basketball, a balloon-savvy clown molded latex sculptures for patient children mesmerized by her process, and focused artists produced superb caricatures and exquisite face make up.
Held in observance of April as Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month, the event afforded community agencies the opportunity to spread their unique messages of wellness, success and independence to San Antonio families. From youth and women’s rights and advocacy to community health and self-care, the Love Our Kids Family Day brought together individuals and causes that uplift entire communities.
“Youth enrolled in our BCFS-San Antonio programs are often enrolled in programs with our partner organizations,” explained BCFS-San Antonio’s Interim Regional Director Kimberley Rodriguez.
“Today is simply an opportunity for parents and their kids to have fun together, to share a little information about community organizations, and let community members know that we are here if they need us.”
Among the crowd of more than 50, Ms. Black Texas, Chaunice Holley, walked hand-in-hand with her four-year-old daughter, Madison, between booths, collecting information and playing the kid-friendly games. Holley, crowned Ms. Black Texas in January 2018, has chosen to share the BCFS Health and Human Services-San Antonio mission with the broader audience of Ms. Black Texas.
“I identify with the youth, with what they are going through,” she said when asked why she aligned her Ms. Black Texas campaign with BCFS-San Antonio’s message.
“Adolescence is a difficult time on its own, and then add the complications of not having a stable home or family; I’ve been there.”
Holley recalled the struggles her single mother and siblings went through in Allentown, Pennsylvania, remembering how a mentor helped her find a path to success.
“I recognize that one person can make a difference,” Holley explained. “I had that one person, so I love to be that person for someone else.”
BCFS-San Antonio’s PAL program provides services to youth aging out of the foster care system to expand their skills and knowledge, strengthen self-confidence, create healthy community relationships and learn self-guidance. PAL provides transition services to better prepare young adults for emancipation.