One of NEW’s favorite things is getting behind causes that support other women. This year we enjoyed supporting On Your Feet Foundation. Per Executive Director Alexis Eyler, On Your Feet Foundation offers services to birth mothers before, during and after adoption. The Foundation has three pillars of services, Case Management, Grants Funding and Retreats.
Alexis said: “On Your Feet appealed to me because it was a largely unknown organization whose mission is to help a very marginalized segment of the population. I think the vast majority of us know someone who has adopted a child or we have a friend who was adopted, but, rarely does someone volunteer that they are a birthmother. In college, I worked in the nursery at The Cradle. I saw the sacrifice that was made by the mothers who chose adoption for their child. It is a heart wrenching choice and one made with an incredible amount of selflessness.”
In 2015, 89 women aged 19 to 42 years old received case management to help with the adoption process. The Foundation also awarded $4,000 in grants for job placement, housing needs and tuition assistance. In addition, the foundation offers retreats for birth mothers. 30 women attended two retreats last year, with 6 women receiving full scholarships and 6 receiving partial scholarships to attend.
Alexis added: “Not only do I think it is important to educate people about adoption from the birthmother’s perspective, but more importantly, I think the existence of an organization dedicated to helping birthmothers get back on their feet following placement is critical – through community building, case management support and grants, we are able to change the course of a life and I truly believe that benefits everyone.”
On Your Feet Foundation honors the choice a birthmother has made to place her child for adoption; empowers the birthmother by helping her set and meet goals, enabling her to love, honor and respect herself. The foundation educates others to respect the decision made by the birthmother to place her child for adoption.
We dined on delicious pizza at Moretti’s Mount Prospect, which also donated a portion of their dine-in and take-out receipts on two dates to further assist On Your Feet Foundation.
Then we launched into Networking Bingo, a fun way to get to know more about our guests than the standard ‘what’s your business’ introductions. We learned about hobbies, people they admired, and ideal prospects. This activity bears repeating in the future.
The winners were happy with their new acquisitions.
Raising money and going home with goodies after dining and mingling is definitely win-win.