February 26, 2023

Celebrating our Donors and Volunteers

Every child deserves a safe and loving place to be and the Yolo Crisis Nursery provides just that. When a family comes to the Yolo Crisis Nursery, they are in urgent need and have nowhere else to go. The nursery embraces each family. We keep the children safe and healthy, while identifying and providing the support and resources families need to manage the underlying problems. 

I have been a part of the nursery since we opened in 2001. First as a volunteer, then a member and president of the Friends of the Yolo Crisis Nursery, a member and president of the Board of Directors, and now as the director of development and community relations.

Aside from the children we serve, my favorite thing about the Nursery are the amazing supporters unified by our mission to protect children and preserve families. It is so inspiring to see people from diverse backgrounds sharing their time, talents, and resources to help protect vulnerable children in our community.

We are so grateful for long-time donors like one anonymous donor who recently shared, “We are inspired to support organizations with an important and urgent cause, strong leadership, and efficient and thrifty operations.” The donor continued, “it is impressive that the Nursery has been able to serve so many families over the years with such limited resources.”

The Yolo Crisis Nursery’s emergency respite care is largely funded by the generosity of our community. It is because of this support from individuals, organizations, foundations, and businesses that we are here today to help families thrive.

Since opening our doors, the nursery has served more than 8,000 children and their families with a 98% success rate. That figure is a key measure of the success of two of the Nursery’s signature programs: emergency/respite care for children and wrap-around services for parents. We could not serve as many children with the same success without the support of our generous donors and tireless volunteers.

“Volunteering at the Yolo Crisis Nursery is a very rewarding experience,” Mary Lou Hulse, a volunteer and donor, said. “I learned from the Executive Director, Heather Sleuter, her outstanding staff, the children and babies. I feel it is important that all children are in a safe and nurturing environment. As a volunteer I helped so many children by holding them, singing to them, and comforting them. I have even brought my inner piece of yoga to the environment with the children and staff. New volunteers can rest assured they will be working with an excellent team. The Yolo Crisis Nursery is a wonderful place to give back to our community that needs us.”

Thanks to our talented staff, volunteers, donors, and supportive community, the Nursery programs protect children in our community from harm and create long-term change by breaking generational cycles of abuse. We are so grateful for your support. It truly takes a village — I just love our donors, volunteers, and supporters. Thank you all!

If you believe all children deserve to grow up in a safe, stable, and loving home, we invite you to get involved with the Yolo Crisis Nursery — join the Friends of the Yolo Crisis Nursery and help plan an event, volunteer, or become a reoccurring monthly donor. We also welcome those who might be interested in joining our board of directors. Please visit our website to learn more.

Looking for a fun way support the Yolo Crisis Nursery? Our 11th Annual Crab Feed is Saturday, March 11, at Waite Hall in Yolo County Fairgrounds. To-go meals are delicious and still available for $65 each, please order by March 1 at www.yolocrisisnursery.org. Dinner includes delicious fresh crab, Caesar salad, vegetarian pasta, bread, and cookies for dessert.

Mark your calendars and save the date for two exciting fundraisers coming later this year: our first ever Kentucky Derby viewing party at Windmill Vineyard on May 6 and, returning this fall, our Barn Dance on Oct. 21.

I invite you to visit www.yolocrisisnursery.org to learn more about how you can help Yolo County kids and join our nursery family. 

— This article originally appeared in the Davis Enterprise. Becky Heard is the Director of Development and Community Relations with the Yolo Crisis Nursery.