Daniel Island Community Fund selects final ‘Charity of the Month’
For more than 200 years, the Carolina Youth Development Center (CYDC) has been serving families and youth in crisis across the state by providing a safe environment, educational support, and career readiness to empower and equip them for success. The legacy of leading the way for foster youth in group care continues, thanks to the support of organizations such as the Daniel Island Community Fund (DICF).
“CYDC has a long history of making significant, positive and lasting impacts on our local community. Our mission is to ensure the youth who are a part of CYDC feel safe, and are given the opportunity to grow and succeed,” said Shelly Leeke, Daniel Island resident and member of CYDC’s Board of Directors. “I am honored to be a part of CYDC and proud of my fellow Daniel Island neighbors and community members for selecting it as December’s charity of the month.”
DICF was set up as a vehicle for Daniel Island residents and businesses to fund nonprofit initiatives. During each month of 2019, an advisory committee of residents selected one local charity to encourage community members to support.
“CYDC is honored to have been chosen as December’s charity,” said CYDC CEO Beverly Hardin. “The Daniel Island community is an integral support system for our residents and families. Their generosity allows us to meet the ever-growing needs of our clients by expanding our programs and services.”
In May of this year, CYDC opened Nu House, the only program of its kind in the Lowcountry. Nu House is a home on CYDC’s campus that was built to help foster youth ages 18-21 transition into adulthood by providing life skills, training, financial literacy and assistance with attaining personal records and documentation including birth certificates, licenses and medical records.
Already, several Nu House residents have graduated from the program and are now living as independent young adults. Based on the success of the program in its launch year, CYDC plans to renovate a second building in order to support the growing need of assistance for youth transferring from foster care to independence.
In the coming year, CYDC will celebrate its 230th anniversary, will serve more than 800 at-risk individuals, and plans to open a much-needed Family Support Center to strengthen families in the community. Carolina Youth will also launch a new care model — Teaching Families — aimed at building positive change in residents while remaining focused on the holistic development of each individual.
“The Daniel Island community is such a giving community and I am so proud that an organization I enjoy supporting was chosen as our local charity for December,” said Merrill Fei, Daniel Island resident and member of CYDC’s Board of Directors. “CYDC has substantial goals to celebrate their 230-year history, while they continue to provide critical programs in our community. It is important that we support their mission of protecting childhood, empowering families, and preparing for adulthood.”