At a time when nearly 30 million Americans are out of work, entire industries have been upended, and much of the world has come to a standstill, celebrities are coming together to support one of the most vulnerable populations in this time of uncertainty: children in foster care.
On Monday, singer Miguel, media personality Terrence J, comedian Lil Rel, and actor and singer Luke James partnered with the Precious Dreams Foundation to release a PSA raising awareness about the more than 435,000 children in foster care.
“If our world feels lost today,” says Terrence J in the video, “then imagine those children and their feelings are more uncertain, anxious, afraid, depressed. And some are even dealing with this crisis alone,” continued James.
The PSA was released on May 4 to kick off National Foster Care Month. The Precious Dreams Foundation says their goal is to encourage donors to “join in giving comfort” to those in foster care, especially in light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The org believes that bedtime comfort items like blankets, storybooks, and journals can help young people develop better coping skills to deal with stress, anxiety, and loneliness.
“The responsibility to make children feel seen, heard and comforted is one we all must share in America,” said Nicole Russell, co-founder and executive director of the Precious Dreams Foundation, in a statement. “During the pandemic and always, we must consider the children in our country’s foster care system and provide the necessary tools to support their growth.”
Donations will help support the foundation’s mission to give foster care children its signature comfort bags, which include pajamas, teddy bears, books, journals, therapy putty, and socks. The org says such bedtime necessities provide youth with positive reinforcement to help them dream peacefully – literally and figuratively.
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Today is my birthday and I got to do the thing I love the MOST. I delivered comfort bags to children who need new journals, books, pajamas and comfort for @preciousdreamsfoundation. I’ll sleep better tonight because of it. – Thank you everyone for all of your love, gifts and sweet surprises. I am a representation of everything good in my life. #birthdaysuit #coronawear #volunteer — P.s. order your @iamshonsimon mask today! Her company is donating funds to pay bills for people in need.
The Precious Dreams Foundation was founded in 2012 by Russell and her mother, Angie Medina, to provide young people under 19 years old living in foster care and homeless shelters with bedtime comfort items and therapeutic programs that promote self-comforting skills. “Whether a bear is held tight after a bad dream or a bedtime story leads to a happy imagination, we hope sleeping can be made easy, we hope to inspire precious dreams,” reads a statement on the org’s website.
In addition to New York City, the foundation has established four local chapters in Chicago, South Florida, Los Angeles, and Baltimore and is working to expand to Houston and Washington D.C.
Watch the PSA below.