Do you remember your first Thanksgiving or Christmas? Do you remember the smell of the turkey or ham wafting in the air? Perhaps you recall how happy you were when you received that very special gift. Or, do you remember being with your friends and family; recalling the laughter, warmth, hugs and love you felt during these special holidays. Those childhood days were such blessings and so very special.
During this holiday season, your Tamassee DAR School family wants you to know just how grateful and blessed we are for your prayers and financial support of the children. It is because of you that we are able to provide programs and services that help each child we serve overcome educational learning gaps; heal from physical mental and emotional trauma; and to know what it is to be loved, love themselves and love others.
I know you will agree, that it is the power of love that has made all the difference in our lives. Family and friends who have come along beside us that gave us encouragement, listened to our hurts and most of all loved us through it. But…what if you grew up in a home where the simple, but powerful words of “I love you” were seldom spoken?
“Sally” was raised in such a home before arriving at Tamassee. She had no encouragement or praise for jobs well done. No pats on the back. No one to just give her a hug of support. Most of all the words, “I love you” were seldom if ever spoken to her. For these reasons and others, the concept of love and acceptance was foreign to Sally when she arrived on campus. She was dealing with anger, rejection, hurt and insecurity and the only way she knew how to express these emotions were through frequent outbursts and conflict.
Fortunately, Tamassee DAR School staff are trained to handle these issues. When outbursts occurred and additional staff were called to help Sally resolve conflicts inside her, it always ended with the staff genuinely stating three profound words to her—“I love you.”
At Tamassee, Sally heard those words with great frequency. Soon she began to trust that those words had meaning to her and that her Tamassee family genuinely loved her. This was witnessed by a staff member coming to support Sally during an emotional evening. As the staff member left Sally’s side, she heard a quiet voice whisper, “I love you.”
So, let me say again just how blessed we are to have your support. Without it, we would never have had the opportunity to hear Sally’s quiet whisper of “I love you.” You help us to remind children of their beauty when they feel ugly; their talents when they feel useless; their purpose when they feel lost; and wanted when they feel alone. This is what you help us do and this is why we will give thanks for you this holiday season.