Valentine Project Brings Heart-Felt Joy To BFL Survivors
For the third year in a row, survivors of domestic violence with disabilities at Barrier Free Living’s (BFL) programs received gorgeous gift bags prepared by the Valentine Community Project.
The project delivered 160 gift bags to BFL. Overall the project delivered gift bags to 548 residents at 15 shelters for people fleeing domestic abuse and trafficking
Emily Valentine Sottile shares how the project came to be:
“The Valentine Community Project is a community response – I never would have come up with the idea on my own. Nearly a decade ago the colleague of a friend was participating in a Valentine’s day effort to give 17 gift bags on Valentine’s day to residents of a shelter for domestic abuse and trafficking in Brooklyn. My friend knew this is something I care about and offered my help. I liked the idea of celebrating Valentine’s day by making people feel loved, more than going to a crowded restaurant. I have always thought of Valentine’s day as a community holiday, but I know a lot of people don’t like Valentine’s Day and I imagine being in a shelter because of intimate partner violence or trafficking would make this day especially hard. We make our communities stronger, safer places by loving our neighbors. This is a small way of showing that love.”
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