Circles USA (the national model St. Luke’s uses to help families experiencing poverty) featured the Winter Garden chapter in their national newsletter this month. Read how Allies and Leaders are working together online toward a brighter tomorrow in the article below…
The seventh cohort for Circles Winter Garden in Central Florida had begun its journey toward becoming matched sometime in the Fall of last year. As this diverse group closed out their last matching activity in early March, the Coronavirus loomed. This highly anticipated moment was being threatened by advisories of social isolation and widespread shutdowns. Yet, even a pandemic could not stop the incredible team of volunteers and staff from creating these irreplaceable connections.
After reorganizing the in-person Circles weekly meeting to become virtual, as well as pouring over information, letters and preference forms from Allies and Leaders alike, the team organized a presentation they could share to showcase the newly matched circles to our Circles Community; all via Zoom.
Pictured above are the 9 newest Matched Circles including a household of three adults—all related and working together to overcome poverty—and 3 Circle Leaders who have come back to serve as Circle Allies. In the virtual weekly meeting, each of these Matched Circles were organized into breakout rooms to build trust by getting to know each other better.
The journey from application to Matched Circle was long and had a few bumps, but the members of Circles Winter Garden are ready, now more than ever, for the road ahead, not because of the strength of any individual, but because they have found new ways to stick together through rough times like these.