Why can’t you share the names, genders, or ages of the youth?
There are many legal guidelines protecting the privacy of youth in foster care. We are able to share names of the youth at Christmas, when we are not connecting any other information that could help others identify them or their location, such as their gender or birth month.
How old are the children receiving the cards?
The youth our partner organizations serve are ages 6-16.
What kinds of cards should I choose?
You can choose cards that are as general or as specific as you would like. You can send cards for a variety of ages, or for no specific age. In addition to birthday cards, we send encouragement cards that can be given any day of the year to youth and their staff/social workers, who also need to hear a message of hope. We love handmade cards, and the youth do too! No matter what kind of cards you choose, you can rest assured that they will make their way to a child or social worker who will be grateful to receive them.
What should my cards say inside?
The point of these cards is simply to let youth and their staff/social workers know that someone out there is thinking of them and sending them hope and love. Just hearing that makes more of a difference than you would think! Please keep in mind that most of these children will not spend their birthdays with loved ones, or with the festivities that many of us enjoy.
Can I include money or gifts in my cards?
We ask that you do not include money or gift cards inside your Cards of Hope. The true value of your card is its message of hope, which is the best gift you can give. Braid does make sure that each child at the group home receives a birthday cake, and we send gift cards to the group home on a regular basis for them to buy gifts for the children. If you would like to contribute to that effort, you can make a donation here (put “birthday cakes” or “Cards of Hope” in the comments section). We also collect toys and games from a wish list at Christmas – scroll to the bottom of the page to sign up for our e-news to receive updates about this. And we are always grateful when you include stamps with your cards!
Where do I mail my cards?
Please write your first name and city/state in the return address portion of the envelope and leave the rest of the envelope blank and unsealed. We will address the cards for you. Including stamps with your cards is not required but much appreciated.
Put your cards in a larger envelope and mail them to:
Cards of Hope
312 Georgia St., Suite 235
Vallejo CA 94590
We take care of the rest! We will address the envelopes and mail them individually to each child by their birthday.