Over the next few weeks, we will be working on posting a series of blogs featuring some of the newest UW Bucks member agencies.
In this “Member Agency Spotlight”, we want to acquaint you with these agencies, what services they provide to our community, and ways that you can get involved.
We had a Q&A with Alexis Ridge-Simek, co-founder, and her husband, Joseph Simek, of The Fiaria Project (founded 2015).
Mission Statement: Making transitions easier for foster families in Bucks County and surrounding areas.
Tell us something interesting about yourself?
Joe and I work as yoga therapists. Creating The Fiaria Project seemed like the natural thing to do, allowing us to practice our yoga “off the mat.” We are also the parents of two wonderful little girls, one who we adopted through the foster care system.
What does your organization do and what is your mission?
Our mission is to make placement transitions easier for foster families in the Bucks County, Montgomery County and Philadelphia area by providing foster children with essential clothing, toiletries, and other basic items. Each child placed into care is given a kit containing a week’s worth of new clothing, toiletries, blankets and other personal items. We try to deliver the kit to social workers within the first 24 hours of placement.
How long have you been in operation in Bucks County?
We began in 2015.
What are some programs and services that you offer?
Our main focus is to provide our Transition Kits. However, we also get the conversation started around being a foster parent and highlight the needs of our vulnerable children by giving voice to their experiences.
What are some ways that members of the community can get involved with your organization?
Members of the community can get involved by learning about the many options around supporting our foster children, by becoming an advocate or mentor for a child, by donating to the Fiaria Project, or by becoming a foster or adoptive parent.
Why is being a member agency with The United Way of Bucks County important to your team?
We are so excited to be a member agency of the United Way. As a newer organization it gives us credibility and our donors the assurance they look for as they support our mission. The United Way has also been a helpful guide in the world of nonprofits and its communities.
What are some of your goals for 2018?
This year we hope to expand our reach within Bucks County, working with more foster agencies, as well as begin supporting foster children in Montgomery County. We are looking to grow our office space here in Doylestown, as to be even more accessible to the many social workers in our county.