At ADKF, we pride ourselves on the relationships we develop with our clients. We grow with them and are proud to be their trusted advisors. Because of how important our clients are, we want to share their stories. For this quarter, we interviewed Anais Biera Miracle, Chief Public Relations Officer with The Children’s Shelter (TCS). TCS has shown their dedication and perseverance to their mission throughout the challenges faced during 2020.
The Children’s Shelter celebrated its 120th anniversary in January 2021. It was established in 1901 and is a private, nationally accredited nonprofit corporation. They provide a safe haven for children surviving abuse, neglect, and abandonment in Bexar County. Today TCS is a trauma-informed care certified organization that provides a continuum of care through their family of services. They provide emergency shelter for children in crisis and help children find permanent homes through treatment foster care. Their Family Strengthening programs are available to help parents develop better and safer parenting skills and also assist families who are having internal struggles. Their mental health clinic provides trauma-sensitive therapeutic interventions for children impacted by maltreatment. Finally, on February 1, 2019, The Children’s Shelter launched Family Tapestry, a division of The Children’s Shelter to implement Community-Based Care in Bexar County.
According to Anais, TCS has endured much since its inception including pandemics such as the 1918 pandemic flu, H1N1, and COVID-19. With its roots firmly in place in the San Antonio community of 2 million people, 500,000 of which are children, they were prepared to reach out to a community that has supported them for decades. TCS had to pivot fundraising to find new strategies to do things virtually. Luckily, San Antonio is giving a community. Anais said it best by sharing, “These are not normal times. It takes not normal measures to handle this.” When the organization needed help, the San Antonio community stepped up and replied, “what can we do?” Building relationships with the metro health district provided significant value in learning about the transmission of the virus, what to do, and what not to do to keep families and children safe.
Throughout the challenges, there have been transformations. TCS gained access to better technology and brought together the Family Tapestry network, which include foster care/adoption agencies, emergency shelters, and general residential operations to ensure children and youth experience safety, well-being, and permanency. Adoptions in the past were more rudimentary, using a photo of the child on a piece of paper. Now, with better technology, Family Tapestry has the ability to interview the child/youth/sibling groups with a series of questions and hear the child’s voice. This has enabled Family Tapestry to elevate children’s voices in the community. Anais explained, “Having the kids be able to share what they want out of a parent and family has been an amazingly transformational.”
ADKF has partnered with TCS for the past eight years. When asked how ADKF has helped TCS through this trying time, Anais remarked, “When the CARES Act passed, the PPP money came about, we worked with the SBA [Small Business Association] to learn what we could apply for. Our staff are the front-line workers. ADKF worked with Jenise Diaz and our President /CEO Annette Rodriguez on what the reporting needed to look like. These are vital dollars for our staff for incentive pay and hazard pay, because they’re on the front lines. Being able to navigate the whole PPP program and the regulations that have changed, ADKF has kept up with all of it. We work in sync with ADKF. They have been invaluable.”
“We’re here to provide a critical health care service for our children. We have dedicated staff who love what they do. Whether it’s maintenance staff who keep our facilities clean, to staff who are working directly with infants and children and young people. We have such incredible staff who love the work they do. We are so blessed to live in a community that supports us continuously.”
ADKF is grateful to be TCS’s trusted advisor through their challenges and successes.