Promises2Kids creates a brighter future for the over 3,000 foster children in San Diego County. From the moment they come into foster care and through adulthood, Promises2Kids provides the hope, support, and opportunities these special individuals need to change their lives for the better — now, and for years to come. Promises2Kids has been a leader in our community for more than 30 years — meeting the needs of these children through life-changing programs including the A.B. and Jessie Polinsky Children’s Center, Camp Connect, and Guardian Scholars. Since its inception, Promises2Kids has provided nearly $25 million and services to more than 175,000 abused and neglected children in San Diego County.
Now celebrating its 20th anniversary, the A. B. and Jessie Polinsky Children’s Center has cared for over 60,000 children in need. In the early ’90s, Promises2Kids raised $12 million to build the Center, which is operated by the County of San Diego. Promises2Kids provides annual support for services to 1,000 children cared for at the Center.
Simone credits Promises2Kids and its support for her positive outlook for a bright future. At 13, a pivotal time in any young girl’s life, Simone’s mother passed away, leaving her, and three siblings without anyone to take care of them or a place to go. The young family’s first stop was the Polinsky Children’s Center, where they lived for three months in a safe haven where their sibling bond was nurtured and the staff provided the patience and support necessary for their transition into the foster care system.
Simone continued her education and graduated from San Pasqual Academy, the local residential high school for foster youth built with key support from Promises2Kids. She pursued higher education and became a Promises2Kids Guardian Scholar. As a Guardian Scholar, Simone receives financial assistance, mentoring, employment opportunities, and individualized support that a family would typically provide.
Simone graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and has moved back to San Diego after being accepted into San Diego State University’s Master’s of Arts program in Postsecondary Educational Leadership. She is now also working as a Promises2Kids Youth2Youth, mentoring foster youth at Polinsky. The position supports a flexible schedule, a livable wage, and employment experience — all while giving back. Simone says, “Working at Polinsky is a rewarding and empowering opportunity.” She shares her personal experiences to help the youth at Polinsky feel that they’re understood — and to help them know they are not alone. She understands what they are going through.
The Dream On Concert Gala on June 9 features a private concert with Kenny Loggins and is one way to support Promises2Kids’ important work. (www.promises2kids.org)