Smile Train is a special charity with a solid reputation. They provide surgeries for children all around the world who are born with the cleft palate facial deformity. Clefts are a major problem in developing countries where there are millions of children who are suffering with unrepaired clefts. Most cannot eat or speak properly. Aren't allowed to attend school or hold a job. And face very difficult lives filled with shame and isolation, pain and heartache. Their clefts usually go untreated because they are poor–too poor to pay for a simple surgery that has been around for decades. This charity actually gives children their smiles back. And that makes us smile.
The Vera Bradley Foundation for Breast Cancer was founded on courage, compassion and commitment. Moved by the loss of their dear friend, Vera Bradley Co-founders Barbara Bradley Baekgaard and Patricia R. Miller embraced the cause and began raising funds for breast cancer research in 1993. Their mission: To save lives and to put an end to the disease that took their friend and so many more. Today, the Vera Bradley Foundation supports the team of researchers at the Vera Bradley Foundation for Breast Cancer Research Laboratories at the Indiana University Simon Cancer Center in Indianapolis. Since its inception in 1998, the Foundation has raised more than $10 million and has pledged an additional $10 million endowment to the Indiana University team. We support this foundation, whenever possible. We believe a cure will be found.
Riley Children's Foundation gives hope to thousands of families seeking help for seriously ill and injured children; help that only Riley Hospital for Children can provide. Each child that is treated at Riley is unique. Each one has a special story to tell. From young patients challenged by cancer to children receiving treatment in Riley's burn unit to those undergoing complex surgical procedures, each child's story is one of intense hope. Their stories inspire us.
As our cities and towns expand, and as more and more rural properties are claimed for development, there is an increasing need to preserve what is left of our forests, prairies and wetlands. It is these natural lands that produce the air we breathe, distill toxins from the water we drink, and provide a natural beauty and order that stir our souls and settle our minds. ACRES exists to help protect the last of our natural habitats right here in northeast Indiana, in southern Michigan and in northwest Ohio, one acre at a time.
Organized by community volunteers for Friends of the Park, with the Allen County Parks Department, the New Haven-Adams Township Parks Department and Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation, the ‘Great Tree Canopy Comeback’ takes place every November. The goal is to purchase and plant more than 200 new trees in our parks and along our streets each year.
The mission of Northeast Indiana Public Radio is to engage the community with content that enriches the human experience and creates a more informed public—one that is challenged and invigorated by a deeper understanding and appreciation of events, ideas and cultures. And that is a mission we are happy to support.
For many women in our community, hope starts here. Hope House, Inc. is a not-for-profit organization offering a secure and supportive environment for homeless women in recovery from chemical dependency. Founded by a small group of women in 1981, Hope House has expanded in both size and scope of services throughout the past 26 years. Today, Hope House offers services to 20 residential clients in two transitional residences in our hometown of Fort Wayne, Indiana.
With a mission ‘to fulfill the gospel mission of compassion and care for those in need by providing basic health care by qualified, licensed medical professionals,’ Christian Community Health Care, Inc. provides free or low-cost health care services to those in need right in our own backyard.
The Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana, Inc. works to alleviate hunger through the full use of donated food and other resources. Throughout its nearly 30-year history, the organization has distributed more than 140 million pounds of food and grocery products throughout own our Allen county, as well as Adams, DeKalb, Huntington, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, Wells, and Whitley counties.
The Soup Kitchen started in 1975 when St. Mary's Father Tom was able to serve only a few bowls of soup through the doors of the rectory. During that first year, the Soup Kitchen grew to serve 75,000 meals. Now serving more than 300,000 meals a year, the Soup Kitchen responds to the call of the Beatitudes to ‘feed the hungry’ in our community.
Homelessness arrives at the Mission's door with a variety of faces–the face of a man who has suddenly lost his job; the face of a man who has had to leave his home due to difficulties in relationships; and the face of a man who wrestles with the demons of alcohol or drug addiction. Whatever the reasons for his homeless condition, each man who arrives at the Mission is provided food, shelter, clothing, and most importantly, the hope that he can have a better future.
Supporting cultural activities that our own team members are involved in is another we support our local community. The mission of Fort Wayne Ballet is to inspire and nurture an appreciation for the art of dance through educational excellence, artistic achievement, performance experiences and outreach activities in our community and beyond.