SOURCE: The Fesitval of Children Foundation

November 28, 2006 15:49 ET

Child Awareness Resolution Adopted in Congress

COSTA MESA, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- November 28, 2006 -- Senate Resolution 609, declaring the third week of September "Child Awareness Week," is the most recent milestone reached in an ongoing campaign to have a nationwide, month-long focus on children and on organizations across the country dedicated to enriching children's lives.

"September is Back to School Month, the perfect time to raise awareness of children's issues and children's needs," said Sandy Segerstrom Daniels, Founder and Executive Director of the Festival of Children Foundation, a 501 (c) (3) non-profit based in Orange County, California. Daniels was previously successful in lobbying the California legislature to declare September "Child Awareness Month," and followed that with advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill.

"Senators Richard Burr (R-NC), Lamar Alexander (R-TN), and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) were especially supportive in co-sponsoring the resolution, which was adopted without dissent," said Daniels. "We found a lot of interest on both sides of the aisle in this idea, and so I'm hopeful that the next session will see both the congress and the White House supportive of designating the entire month of September 'Child Awareness Month.' In concert with other children's charities across the country, that's what we'll push for in 2007."

The campaign for Child Awareness Month is an outgrowth of efforts by the Festival of Children Foundation to highlight children's needs and to showcase non-profits and other non-governmental organizations working to meet those needs. To this end, the Foundation sponsors a broad array of activities, and offers to children's charities a variety of services throughout the year. The Foundation's signature event is the Festival of Children™, held each year during the month of September at South Coast Plaza, which is located in Costa Mesa, California. The Festival of Children™ highlights the activities of more than sixty southern California children's charities and features workshops, performances, and other events for children and their families.

The Festival of Children™ provides a high-profile platform each September for participating charities to:

--  Educate the public about their mission and what they do
--  Identify and cultivate new donors and other sources of support
--  Recruit new volunteers
--  Network and coordinate activities and new partnerships with fellow
The Festival of Children Foundation, in collaboration with other non-profits, is in the process of establishing other venues in states other than California for additional Festival of Children™ programs and activities.

In addition to the annual Festival of Children™ event at South Coast Plaza, Festival of Children Foundation's other programs and services include --

Training Seminars: Conducted for the benefit of non-profit staff, seminars are offered as a free service on topics such as Creating an Effective Fundraising Campaign and Building an Effective Board of Directors.

Volunteer Day: Volunteers are a vital resource for non-profit organizations. In 2006, our Volunteer Day matched more than 1,400 high school students with more than 50 organizations for community service projects.

Day with the Arts: This ongoing program offers our organizations tickets at no cost to attend cultural events such as art exhibits and opera, ballet, and theater performances, enriching the lives of children by broadening their access to the arts.

Festival of Children Foundation Member Services

Festival of Children Foundation offers resources and services to our member charities at no charge through the Member Organization's page on our website. Member organization benefits include:

--  Pro-bono professional services: Festival of Children Foundation
    actively seeks out professional organizations including accounting, legal
    and marketing firms to donate their services which our member organizations
    apply for as an in-kind grant.
--  Product and service discounts: We create partnerships in the business
    community that allow our member organizations to receive discounts on
    products and services including office supplies, equipment and travel
--  Volunteer Matching: In an effort to connect charities with the
    community, our member organizations are invited to post volunteer
    opportunities on our website.
--  Direct Grants: Through our grant program, the Foundation offers direct
    grants to our member organizations.
Master Events Calendar: As a way to facilitate greater collaboration among our groups, the Foundation's Master Events Calendar allows member organizations to post upcoming community and fundraising events. This is a valuable resource for charities as they plan future events and pursue collaborative opportunities.

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