Community Connections

San Diego Foster Youth Current Events

Aug 18, 2023

Camp Connect’s Biggest and Best Summer Camp Yet!

Camp Connect Summer Camp is one of the highlights of our year, a special week where youth can just be themselves and have fun with their siblings and friends.
This year’s expanded camp took place over 6 days and 5 nights and provided the life-changing experience of an overnight camp. While maintaining the traditional sibling-oriented camp, this year was open to all youth in care. Nearly 100 youth were in attendance.
Campers gathered at a spacious campground in the mountains of Julian. They splished, splashed, and dove in as they immersed themselves in the “Under the Sea” theme. Time was divided between a pool, ziplining, horseback riding, inflatable waterslides, music therapy, talent shows, games, and much more.
And where would we be without our outstanding Volunteer Team?! Every one of the 60 that were on hand made an impact. Many went above and beyond to make this year’s camp as special as possible; some were having so much fun, they even elected to stay beyond their shift to continue serving these youth.
We’re looking forward to sharing some of these moments with you in the coming weeks.

Guardian Scholars Visit Historically Black Colleges & Universities

An unfortunate reality of growing up in foster care is that many young people grow up in families that might not reflect their birth heritage. Promises2Kids works hard to address this alienation through our Guardian Scholars cultural groups and diverse mentoring team. But in some ways, each student finds their own path. We give them every opportunity we can. One of those ways is by prioritizing a trip for African American students to tour some of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities of this country.

For most students, it was the first time they had been to the East Coast and surely something they will long remember. The group visited Howard University, Hampton University, and Delaware State University. While on the other coast, they also visited some of the sights that make D.C. special, the White House, Capital Hill, the National Mall, the MLK Memorial, and others. They had some fun at the boardwalk of the National Harbor and rode the Capital Wheel. The event visited the National Museum of African American History and Culture to experience some of the history they belong to.

As we see often with these trips, a bonus is witnessing these students develop friendships and community with each other. Many were shy and a little overawed by the trip at first, but soon enough, they were singing karaoke, braiding hair together, and just being themselves.

Students returned to San Diego with a brand-new sense of possibility for the future. One student noted: “I feel like nothing can stop me.” Another believes they found their calling: “The School of Business gave me hope and motivation to thrive.”

We are grateful to @southwestair, the Official Airline of Promises2Kids, for making this opportunity possible by providing round-trip airfare for those on the trip.

The Bright Horizons Foundation for Children Cuts the Ribbon on Renovated Spaces in The A.B. and Jessie Polinsky Children’s Center

On August 8th, The Bright Horizons Foundation for Children cut the ribbon on a Bright Space in the A.B. and Jessie Polinsky Children’s Center.

The goal was to renovate and update the living spaces in San Diego County’s emergency shelter to provide an engaging, cheerful, safe, and fun environment for youth in care.

Vice President of Education & Development at Bright Horizons, is a volunteer with Promises2Kids and felt that PCC was a natural fit for her work, adding, “I am thrilled this Bright Space will help them better support children and provide comfort for children when they need it most.”

Promises2Kids CEO, Tonya Torosian who was present at the ribbon cutting added: “What you’re surrounded by matters and makes a difference. We want children to feel the comfort, calmness, and care they need.”

We are grateful for valuable partners such as The Bright Horizons Foundation for Children who keep San Diego’s foster youth’s well-being and success in the forefront of their objectives.

Guardian Scholars Attend 2023 Leadership Delegation to Sacramento to Discuss Issues Facing Current and Former Foster Youth

This week, alongside Promises2Kids CEO, Tonya Torosian, Guardian Scholars, Dulce & Hector, attended the 2023 Leadership Delegation to Sacramento, made possible through the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce.

The Chamber put together an incredible series of opportunities to meet with several of our elected officials and other Statewide leaders and experts in our regions on top issues including affordable housing, the fentanyl crisis, mental health, and more.

Guardian Scholars, along with CEO, Tonya Torosian, visited the State Capitol and congressional offices to meet with officials including Senate pro-Tempore Atkins and Senator Ashby to thank them both for their legislative efforts and funding for current and former foster youth.

This trip was an excellent opportunity for Hector & Dulce to share their experiences with our elected officials

They both enjoyed the opportunity to learn and grow personally and professionally, gaining a perspective in government and practicing self-advocacy & networking skills.

We are proud of Dulce & Hector for advocating for other foster youth. We are grateful to the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce for allowing us to be a part of this delegation trip.

Congratulations to Our eNewsletter Signup Winner!

We are happy to congratulate the latest winner of our Email Newsletter signup contest, Lori! 🎉

Lori entered the contest by signing up for our weekly eNewsletter updates. These updates keep you informed on all things Promises2Kids and include stories highlighting the youth we serve.

Lori graciously donated her winning gift cards back to be distributed to a foster family in need. We are grateful to have her as a part of the Promises2Kids family!