May 27, 2016 by: Katrina Carbone
Photo: Home for Little Wanderers/Voices and Visions
Each May, nearly 1,000 people gather at the Seaport World Trade Center for the Home for Little Wanderers’ annual Voices and Visions fundraiser and art show.
This year, the Little Wanderers, who produced the nearly 200 pieces of artwork that were on display, showed audiences what “My World Today” looks like.
The Home hosted its 12th annual Voices and Visions fundraiser on May 25. The organization is the nation’s oldest and New England’s largest non-profit child and family service agency, according to its website. It specializes in providing residential care, group homes, special education schools, intensive and comprehensive foster care and more than ten other programs.
With the involvement of the community, Home for Little Wanderers is able to impact the lives of approximately 7,000 children a year with only a small staff of 700. The Voices and Visions Gala originally started out as a small art show for the children, but it has evolved into hosting a signature fundraiser.
The event has a different theme each year, which is meant to respond directly to what these children are going through. In the past, some themes have been “Heroes,” “Who Am I?” and other subjects that make young minds ponder. The theme for 2016 is “My World Today.” The idea of pairing the event with a theme is meant to help these young people interpret their world in new and artistic ways. There is a combination of traditional and collaborative art forms. Children will also create pieces of writing.
This year’s event was the first for Art Coordinator Erin Roth, who said she appreciated the opportunity to help her Little Wanderers express themselves through art.
“For me personally, anyway to help children is always important to me,” Roth said. “It’s great to give them an opportunity to have a voice through their images.”
Along with displaying the children’s artwork, the Home also presented two awards this year. The Sam Marinella Award is given to someone for a special individual achievement or dedication to the Home’s mission. This year the award was given to 45 foster-care families for their very generous work and their willingness to open their hearts and homes.
The other award is given to a corporate partner for its support and collaboration with HFLW. This year, the Home honored the TJX Corporation for its extensive amount of volunteer time, monetary donations and their contribution to the annual coat drive, which has helped The Home for Little Wanderers immensely.
With the Voices and Visions gala, the The Home for Little Wanderers aims to strengthen families, keep them together and provide social, emotional and educational development to children of all ages through many different avenues.
It’s motto can be summed up as follows: “We never give up on children, and we never let them give up on themselves.”