Making the Future Merry & Bright: Holiday Wishes From McGrory Glass
One of the joys of the season is the opportunity to say thank you.
We are grateful for your business and trust, and look forward to many more years together. In warm appreciation of our association, best wishes for a happy holiday season and a wonderful New Year from everyone here at McGrory Glass!
In a time of gratitude for all that we have, giving back is the best way to express our thanks. In previous years, we’ve been honored to share the amazing work of the Boys and Girls Club of Philadelphia and SPARK. This holiday season, we would like to spotlight Ayuda Venezuela, a charity near and dear to our McGrory Glass family.
Jim Gulnick, our Vice President of Operations and lead engineer, and his wife, Lisett Guevara-Gulnick, support Venezuelan children in need through a special charitable organization called Ayuda Venezuela, or AyudaVen. AyudaVen’s sole focus is El Hogar de Muchas Manos (The Home of Many Hands), a private Venezuelan orphanage that provides housing, food and encouragement daily to more than 140 children in their formative years.
Lisett was born in Valencia, Venezuela, and lived there until 2010 when she moved to the U.S. She has personally supported the orphanage with ongoing donations and periodic visits to encourage their activities.
“There has never been a time of greater need to show support for the people and especially Venezuelan children,” she says. “Your donation and ongoing support means the world to these children and will help the organization care for a growing number of children. Personally, I feel part of this home. These children call us the aunts and uncles who help their family.”
AyudaVen uses monetary donations to purchase and send food to help children at the orphanage and support ongoing nutritional and educational efforts. In addition, local children, who’d otherwise go without food, arrive at meal time. Currently home to 83 girls, Muchas Manos supports an additional 57 local children every day for lunch.
Additional weekend programs bring more than 400 children to Muchas Manos for food, community, and fellowship. “Sometimes the programs contain music and meals, but the organization always focuses on mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual growth,” Lisett says.
‘Many Hands’ Deep, Caring Roots
A Venezuelan dentist and her husband started the Muchas Manos program in June 2005 to ensure the at-risk children living at Muchas Manos could have the opportunity to enjoy a future full of hope and possibilities.
“When a child in “The home of Many Hands” orphanage feels the responsibility to help others and recognizes that you must work hard to achieve goals, I believe there’s hope for society,” Lisett says. “I invite those with far fewer challenges to reflect on how far our commitment and responsibility is to put forward sustainable programs—and not to simply make a donation to fulfill a feeling of philanthropy this holiday season and beyond.”
El Hogar de Muchas Manos is unique because it has remained open and sustainable, despite social, political, and economic adversities in Venezuela that have caused more than 50 other childcare homes to close in recent years.
A tour of the Muchos Manos buildings tells a lot about the organization. The children who live there learn to take care of those less fortunate than them, welcoming new children into the family. Several of the resident girls who’ve grown into young women with professional careers as doctors, psychologists, artists, and chefs return to work with the children.
Muchas Manos Is ‘Full of Love and Colors’
Another of the most important elements of the Muchas Manos program that Lisett points to is the “holistic system to help children form habits and supplemental educational reinforcement.” She says that just a single visit to the home shows that it’s one of the cleanest, most organized places for children to grow up. “It’s full of love and colors,” Lisett says, “The children are educated, social, and caring.”
Each year, the best way to celebrate the holiday season is to help others. The “Many Hands” program sponsored by Ayuda Venezuela, Inc. is now in its 155h year. Recently, the organization did a lot of good:
- Purchased more than 80 pairs of different size shoes for each child
- Bought mattresses, sheets, pillows, and towels for the children
- Supplied baby formula for newborns who came to the orphanage, and for others born in nearby hospitals
- Supplied food and toys to local families during the Christmas season
“This year, a big focus for AyudaVen is to send laptops to children at the orphanage for virtual classes,” Lisett says. “Currently there’s only one computer for the near 100 users. We know that many companies donate or dispose of old laptops or tablets, so this is a good opportunity to donate them.”
AyudaVen will use donations for these enrichment plans in 2021:
- Resources and supplies for ongoing camp activities
- Construct office for onsite psychological assistance
- Laptop donations for online classes
- Utensils and equipment for food preparation
- Ongoing food, shoes, clothing, and supplies.
When you donate, 100% of the net proceeds raised through AyudaVen will be used to purchase, box, and ship these urgently needed food and supplies in support of the programs. AyudaVen has unpaid volunteers originally from Venezuela now living in Miami, Philadelphia, Dallas and Houston. “We use donated funds to buy food and supplies, and to box and ship the items directly to the orphanage and arrange critical transportation,” Lisett says.
Learn more about AyudaVen’s work and El Hogar de Muchas Manos in this moving video.
ABOUT AYUDA VENEZUELA INC.
Ayuda Venezuela Inc. is a nonprofit foundation that supports the orphanage El Hogar de Muchas Manos (The Home of Many Hands) in Venezuela. There are no associations with the government or public agencies in Venezuela.
Please donate and consider monthly tax-deductible contributions via PayPal: Ayuda Venezuela, Inc., 27 Kristen Lane, Mantua, NJ 08051, as managed by Lisett Guevara-Gulnick.
Remember to use Amazon Smile to enable Amazon to use a small part of its revenue from each purchase to support AyudaVen via this link.
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