Words by Smiley Team
Parents provide, protect, raise, and nourish their children as they grow – but for those whose child has a critical illness, life can get tough.
Miracles for Kids wants to alleviate some of that pressure for families in California.
“I was on the receiving side of charity as a kid, and I've always known that a life of service was going to be important to me because it was so integral for my survival when I was a kid,” Miracles for Kids founder, Autumn Strier, tells Smiley News.
“Incredible people in your lives for brief periods of time can make a lasting impact.”
The organization was founded on Autumn’s own experiences and the things she saw in the community around her.
At the time, she had a two-year-old, and was pregnant with her second who had medical issues. "That led me to our local children's hospital where I witnessed a family that had less resources and was going through something much more extraordinary than I was with my daughter, Charlotte at the time," she says, "and it opened my eyes to a need in the community.”
Miracles for Kids works up and down the west coast of the US, but most of their work is in Orange County, California. They cover a whole host of services, including funds to help pay bills, housing assistance, medicine, and care packages that started because of Covid.
They even have a complex, called Miracle Manor, that provides apartments to families who desperately need them.
“It has 12 individual units, which together act as one combined community of support for the families who live there,” says Autumn.
“Today, it sits at full capacity and has wonderful wraparound services for families who are at greater risk for homelessness as a result of their child's illness or treatment period, which for some families could be multiple years.”
Over the years, Miracles for Kids has helped more than 1,500 families and is always looking to expand their work.
Supporting their work is a way you can feel like you're making a difference in the community, adds Autumn, "even if it's just an hour of time and Miracles does offer those opportunities year-round".
DONATE: Miracles for Kids takes donations and many of its donors are from areas outside of California.
SUPPORT: If you’re in Orange County consider volunteering your time to the organization, and if not consider volunteering with another similar project.