Children’s Disaster Services (CDS) has exceeded its goal of 2,500 Individual Kits of Comfort to provide to children affected by disasters this year. CDS has developed the Individual Kit of Comfort as an alternative for in-person care to children affected by disasters during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Individual Kit of Comfort was created to promote a sense of normalcy and an opportunity for the healing power of play.
After putting out an appeal for donations of 2,500 kits by the end of September, CDS associate director Lisa Crouch has announced that donors exceeded that goal by several hundred kits. Now, CDS is tasked with deploying out the remaining kits to children where the needs are greatest.
To date, CDS has deployed the kits through their partnership with the Red Cross. Recipients have included children and families affected by storms in the Gulf, flooding in Missouri, and multiple wildfires in northern California.
The Red Cross also connected CDS with a new organization for distribution, PWNA. Partnership with Native Americans is receiving 1,000 of the kits this week. This new emphasis for the project is to support children living on Native American reservations in the western United States, which have been badly affected by COVID-19. Crouch reported that getting the kits into the hands of children in need was always the goal and CDS recognized this is where the need is greatest in this moment.
While the initial appeal has been fulfilled, CDS continues to evaluate the needs of children and will be looking for other ways to support disasters.
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