On this episode of the DCFYI Digest, we spoke with Liza Lindenberg about her involvement with DCFYI and the Establishing Roots fundraiser.
DCFYI: Can you introduce yourself and talk about how you got started with DCFYI?
Liza: My name is Liza Lindenberg and I first learned about DCFYI just because I was looking for organizations that dealt with foster youth and because I realized that that is one of the populations that is such an often ignored and unrecognized group. And then I met Susan Punnett, and I was able to include them in a fundraiser we were having for our church. And it's been really a nice experience.
Right now, my husband and I are basically helping with just attending fundraisers and being part of the newsletter and keeping in touch with the activities. We're more of a peripheral stance.
DCFYI: Have you attended Establishing Roots before?
Liza: Our first interaction was when we attended last year, and it was really a lot of fun and it was a really great experience.
DCFYI: What would you say was your favorite part of the fundraiser? What do you think was the most impactful part of the fundraiser for you?
Liza: Wow, that's a good question. I'd say that I really thought that the most impactful part of the fundraiser was hearing the speeches from the one young woman that went through the program. That was really great and really positive in terms of how successful she had become and made it through the system. And I think that was really one of the most exciting parts of it. I of course, I enjoyed the food, and I enjoyed the whole auction event and just being around a lot of people who had the same like-minded ability to want to help.
DCFYI: If someone was wondering if they should come to the event, what would you say?
Liza: I would say they should definitely attend because it's not only does great for the community, but it's also good individually as well. I mean, you get a lot out of it and it's not a large commitment.
DCFYI: What makes DCFYI unique?
Liza: I think what makes DCFYI unique is that they are focusing on a group that is kind of hard to pinpoint. They often are ignored, and I think they're kind of almost a limbo state. So that's what I think is great about DCFYI because foster kids that are aging out of the system often don't have anyone to turn to or fit into a category that's easy to stratify them. And so, I think this is such a great organization since they address the people that are really in a very vulnerable state and often don't have a lot of support.
DCFYI: Can you talk a little bit about the successes you've seen DCFYI have over this past year you’ve been involved?
Liza: I just like hearing the good communication that goes out about the interactions that happen between the young people and their mentors and then trying to set up times for them to meet and just have normal social events. I think it's such a great, a great opportunity for people to meet, connect and just to learn from each other.
DCFYI: Is there anything else you want to share about DCFYI or the fundraiser?
Liza: I think Susan has been just an amazing person and she really, I think, has done such a wonderful job in creating a positive atmosphere for and adding to the energy. And I feel like the more people that get to know about it, the more people would be really wanting to be there and to be engaged and to be part of the whole process.